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My superhero powers include making adorable, little people and savings lots of money at the grocery store. ♥ Mommy to Lily (03.30.2007) ♥ Mommy to Navy (02.05.2011) ♥

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Lily's Surgery ... Post-Op Update

Lily's surgery went well. She was really good when they were registering her and doing vitals. They took her to "blow up the balloon," which is how they give the anesthesia. No fussing, no fit.

I went back to the waiting room for about 45 minutes, which is all the longer the surgery took. Watched "SpongeBob SquarePants" while this other set of parents was talking about reading a study that kids who watch the show perform worse in school and that there's no way Squidward could water his kelp garden underwater.

When I went to the recovery room, Lily was starting to wake up and fuss. She was confused and scared. She'd gone to sleep in one room and was waking up in another. She told us her throat hurt.

Her nurse got her some Sprite, with the promise that if she drank her pop, she'd get to go home. Lily rested a bit and watched a movie.

They gave her some anti-nausea and pain medication. She kept saying that she was going to throw up. We got to bring home a pink kidney dish!

Off to Target for her prescription, a special My Little Pony toy, and some snacks for my little sickie.

We've been home watching movies and lounging around.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Surgery Tomorrow!

With Lily's surgery tomorrow, we've spent the last couple of days talking to her about what's going to happen so she won't be too scared.

We watched Curious George Goes to the Hospital to help introduce the concept to her because just explaining it wasn't doing the trick.

I let her know that her special lovey can be with her all the time. Mommy will be there when she goes to sleep and when she wakes up. After she wakes up, they'll give her a special snack.

She told me that she didn't want to get a shot and that she was a little nervous and scared. (How does a 4-year-old even know the word "nervous?")

We ate a special dinner from Subway and picnicked in the living room watching TV. She went to bed without any whining or crying.

I hope this brings some relief, not just for Lily, but for all of us!

Monday, September 26, 2011

What a crazy, busy day!

Lily had her pre-surgery lab work today. I thought she'd be brave, but it scared her. They have someone assist with holding her arm. She didn't even flinch and just watched the vile fill up. Her bravery was rewarded with a sticker.

Lily's appointment was first.

Her sleeping is worse, and she's waking up in the middle of the night, every night. We've had 3 really bad days, but if you look at how she's slept and napped, it makes sense. With Lily's surgery coming up, we just tweaked one thing in her current treatment plan. No major changes until after surgery and a repeat sleep study. Just her 2 refills were over $1000 at the pharmacy. Thankful for good insurance. I only had $25 out-of-pocket.

Navy's appointment was next.

He's 17 pounds, 9 ounces. I didn't get his length. The doctor looked at his rash, coupled with Dave's occasional skin issues. We came home with 5 prescriptions. One cream from his face, one cream for his body, an antibiotic to prevent infection, an anti-histamine to help with itching at night, and another anti-histamine to help with itching during the day.

Lily's surgery is coming up later this week, and both kids go back in a month to follow-up. Navy's 9-month is also coming up!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Lily's Surgery

I know that I've mentioned it in passing, but really haven't given the details on Lily's sleep study from July or her upcoming surgery.

The results of her sleep study was that she failed. She has several stoppages, some of which lasted up to 13 seconds. She only spends about 90 minutes in REM sleep.

The diagnosis was obstructive sleep apnea.

Basically, her glands (tonsils, adenoids) swell when she sleeps, which restricts the air flow as she breathes. It's one of the reasons she snores.

In turn, this can cause behavior problems, such as the inability to focus and follow directions. Just because she's chronically tired.

It's been such a long process because we've been fighting with the insurance company the whole way. They'd rather treat her for autism or ADHD, rather than find out what the real problem is. So, we've have to prove (with her 2 sleep studies) that she has a problem sleeping.


The appointment with the ENT was short and sweet. He had reviewed the July results and did a quick exam. Her tonsils were enlarged when we went in, but there was no sign of infection. He said that it'd be best, especially while she's so young, to take them out.

The objective over the next couple of days is to make sure that Lily knows what's happening so she won't be scared, and that I'll be there when she goes to sleep and when she wakes up. Her lovey will be with her the whole time and that this will make her feel better.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

It's not about me.

I wouldn't have even thought about "The Fox & the Hound," but we were talking about it in our pre-walk huddle. Just talking about how difficult it'd be for us to survive less than ideal nights on the streets.

In the movie, Widow Tweed eventually has to take Tod out to the woods and release him into the wild. Tod knows nothing about living in the forest, but other animals show Tod how life is in the woods.

From my two nights visiting with the homeless in Fort Wayne, they seem to have the same kind of unspoken system.

We also got onto the conversation of what they do the other 6 days that SOS isn't out walking the streets. There are several other groups that do similar things on other nights.

Our night started at Freimann Square. Papa Smurf was there. He's got an apartment now, but he still comes out to the Square. Very sweet man. Though I didn't know him when he was on the streets, I'm glad he still comes out to visit his friends and for us 'newbies' to get to meet him.

Mitch and Missy. I wish I knew more of their story. All I was able to gather is that Mitch lost his job. Now, they're out on the streets. They have family keeping some of their belongings. Missy needs some jeans with the cooler weather coming, so I've started asking around. I think that we've got 2 pairs lined up for her! Yay!

Over at the space ship, we saw Bernard. He was sleeping, so we didn't disturb him. The guys left some snacks for him.

It was quite a trek, but we met up with Brad and Michael. They were sitting on a log chatting by the light of a candle when we joined them. They got loaded up with snacks.

"A senior citizen shaving in the senior citizens' center. If that's the most dastardly thing I've done in my life, I'm just gonna have to live with that."

Michael was talking about the plight of the homeless and how they are being pretty much persecuted at the moment. He said that it just takes one or two people being stupid and acting up, and that ruins things for the lot. Places that are almost paramount to survival in the cold winter months are becoming off limits because of a few bad apples.

Our time at the Salvation Army was short, but nice. There weren't too many guys out, and one of the other groups had already arrived and got most of the needs taken care of.

We didn't see Drew, and that made me kind of sad. I've been thinking about him the last two weeks. Wanting to know if he's feeling better. I was told that this is pretty normal for him.

"It has been customary to take people’s pain and lessen our own participation in it by turning it into an issue, not a collection of human beings."
-Anna Quindlan

I think I'm so guilty of wanting to just fix this, fix them. Kind of like I would sleep better at night if they weren't out there, be in Drew or the homeless. Then, I realize that it's not about me. These people have graciously welcomed me into their lives. Their space, their 'homes'. It's my perception that makes me uncomfortable.

I'm slowly learning.

Monday, September 12, 2011


Navy fed himself lasagna for the first time. 2011.

Lily feeding herself lasagna for the first time. 2007.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

We don't have homeless people in Fort Wayne.

The picture is from Dallas, Texas. August 2011.

A couple of months ago, I gave a friend some soap. He offered to let me walk with him and the Saints On the Streets crew. I thought that it would be a wonderful experience, but that's as far as it went.

Besides, this is Fort Wayne. A nice, quiet, sedate city in the midwest. We don't have homeless people. Heck, we're the "City of Churches," and churches take care of those less fortunate. So, we don't have homeless in Fort Wayne. Period.

The subject had kinda been pushed by the wayside. Honestly, minus a couple of comments here and there, I'd pretty much completely forgot about it.

Then, I went on vacation...

Dallas is huge. The metroplex just blew my mind, still does. It all started as a joke. We were "Hooker Hunting" on Harry Hines Blvd at 11 in the morning. Which, by the way, was a bust.

A repeat a few days later around 9 at night also revealed zero working girls. So, we decided to go "Homeless Hunting." Hell, it's Dallas. There have got to be homeless people there.

Drove by American Airlines stadium. Fail.
Drove by the Grassy Knoll. Fail.
Drove by the Greyhound station. Fail.

Then, we were just driving up some street that I forget the name of and people were sitting on benches. Those can't be homeless people. Where's all their stuff? Yes, I realize that homeless people don't have a ton of stuff, but where are the shopping carts? The bags?

When I took the above picture from the safety and security of my friend's car, something clicked. I don't know what or why, it just did. I still can't think of this lady, whose name and story I don't know, without tearing up a little.

After we got home, I hit up my friend for answers and to see if the offer still stood. After all, there has got to be a concrete reason why and how. This kind of thing doesn't just happen in America, and most definitely not in our fair city.

Why? I just don't get it. Alcoholism. Drug addiction. Mental illness. Even with all of the years that I've listened to Dr. Drew, I will never understand addiction. Continued use in spite of consequences. How can you lose everything? How does it get to that point?

My night out with the homeless started around 7:45 when I dropped my children off with my Dad. It'd been a hellish day for me. Dad said that I needed to do this. So, I did.

I was so nervous. People don't realize how painfully shy I am. Add to that the fact that I was going to see real homeless people!

Drew. He was our first stop. Under a bridge. The guys were talking to him. I just observed. What do you said, do? The flashlights lit up Drew's face. I started to tear up. Then, I started looking at the view of the river. It was quite lovely. I can't think of that interaction with Drew, without tearing up. The intimacy of it all. Drew said he's been feeling tired, so the guys prayed for strength and better health for him. I didn't hear it all, nor did I really listen. I'd seen and heard enough for a while.

Nick and Bernard. I didn't really hear much of what Bernard was saying, but Nick is a real character. He was talking about his kids and things he's been doing to keep himself busy. I kept thinking that his guy cannot be homeless. He doesn't look it. I guess, I'm still a little naive and looking for his "badge of homelessness." I kept smiling. Both guys were so good-natured.

We stopped at another bridge. There were 2 guys sleeping until there, so our group left some snacks and drinks for them.

Then, it was off to the Salvation Army. That was an experience. It kinda turned into a mini block party, which was kind of fun. The guys there needed toiletries and socks. It was very overwhelming, but I really think it all goes back to my naivete. I just don't get it.

The walk back to the car was full of chatting and jay-walking. A lesson of the evening, no one has been hit when jay-walking with SOS. Close calls, but it's never actually happened.

Debrief was hard and full of more questions than answers. I want to know why. How. "Because it is," and "I don't know," are the answers I got and was not happy with. I'm still trying to wrap my head around it. At the same time, I'm thinking about and gearing up for another walk around Fort Wayne to spend the evening with the homeless.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Seven Months Old

Happy 7-month birthday, Navy!!

Navy has six teeth: four on top, two on bottom. He's mastered scooting and is beginning to crawl, only to resort back to scooting because it's so much faster. He's pulling himself up to stand and starting to climb.

I was really looking forward to getting his 7M pictures taken. Dave had given me a picture of him at 7-months-old that I wanted to recreate with Navy. He didn't cooperate as much as I had hoped, but I think that we got a couple of really cute pictures.

Navy also absolutely adores his big sister, Lily. She's really good with him, but sometimes, she really wishes he'd respect her space. I'm sure this is just the beginning of that...