Thursday, January 16, 2014

This One's Gonna Hurt

1)  Another January…. another birthday.  Yep turning 35 on Sunday.  Ouch.  I feel about 70.  No lie: I started taking Pilates again this week ---- and its all classical soothing nature type music playing --- even the teacher with a microphone is whispering or barely talking --- we're doing some type of bent leg lift ---- and we all start laughing because it wasn't the 10 ladies over the age of 65 surrounding me ---but my arthritic knees CRACKING and POPPING loudly with every single movement!  I feel every minute of 35.  Can NOT seem to lose weight anymore like I used to, I am addicted to my Advocare Spark drink since energy left this body with the birth of Mati Claire 6 years ago, I use Rodan & Fields to minimize my aging plus psoriatic skin, I desperately need to go get my arthritis checked out… yeah I could go on and on.  

2)  I decided NOT to do any birthday parties this year.  Hard to believe right?  And trust me, the closer it gets to Mattox's birthday in early March, I am feeling MORE and MORE guilty.  His birthday is the first Sunday of our Spring Break.  He is my only baby to have a birthday during the school year so I'm taking an assortment of cupcakes to his preschool class the Friday before.  As much as he just loves attention (insert sarcasm) he is perfectly fine hanging out with his best friend, Matthew, and getting some ice cream on the actual day.  He told me "4 is just one more closer to turning FIVE!!!!"  Obviously he is counting down the days til he turns 5…. and yes, he wants to go to Disney World with Gigi when he's 5.  His wish is my command.  ;)     Mati Claire asked to go to the beach this year for her birthday… so I think I can manage that one.  I'm willing to bet a dinner at Jerry's Catfish will be in our future as well.  Girl loves her some fried catfish!  Then she recently changed her mind and wants to go to an American Girl Doll Store (closest stores are in Atlanta or Dallas I think).  Hmmm… decisions.    And sweet baby Merritt had such a big party last year -- and the fact that she won't remember this one -- so we're taking it easy this summer!  
But it does hurt me to NOT do a party.  I love throwing parties and I love coming up with ideas for them after they tell me what kind of party they want. #itsnotaboutme

3)  Just say NO!  For some reason this word comes easy to some people.  It hurts me to say no to people I know need help or volunteers.  Mati Claire's school is awesome and its because of parent support and help.  This year I was Homeroom mom for Mati Claire and Mattox and PTO Fundraiser Chair = too much for me! As much as it pains me, I am going to have to say NO to a few things next year when it comes to school (for me, not the kids).  Mati Claire will be changing schools next year, so it will be a good time to pullback before Mattox gets there.  

4)  "This hurts me more than it hurts you."  Have you said that to your child yet?  I said it the first time I ever spanked Mati Claire about 4 years ago.  Lately, I feel like all I do is yell, scream, and say things I shouldn't to my kids.  In my defense, it is usually because they are slow as molasses and we are always late.  I become "Unglued"  (awesome book if you haven't read it).   I recently had a conversation with a person I had just met and they were comparing my kids to someone else's kids.  She said, "Yeah, [insert name] is so nice to her kids… but your kids are the opposite… you must be the mean mommy."  There you have it.  A total stranger telling me I was a mean mom.  
I felt about |this big|.
Of course the next day I had to ask Mati Claire and Mattox what they thought of my parenting skills to which MC replied "You're the best mommy ever!"   Isn't that something???  She also added "You have your bad days… but so do I."  I'll be working on improving my bad days.  The next day we discussed how "Daddy is nocturnal."  interesting stuff.  

So that's sort of my unofficial New Years Resolution list:  no birthday parties, become a nicer mom but still be mom, less commitments that take time away from family, and find the fountain of youth!  ;)  

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Wednesday, January 8, 2014

O Surgery Take 2

Dr. Berch technically classified this surgery as a Ventral Hernia Repair - but to me, it was her second omphalocele surgery.  Because her O was fully repaired at 4 days old, and the muscles more or less "broke" it really is a hernia and not the O though.  He said it was a complicated hernia.

Surgery went great!  He did NOT have to use a biological mesh/patch to help reinforce her ab muscles this time like he fully expected.  Everything went back in and together better than he hoped.  

The recovery was rough.  The pain was so bad. She would hold her breath… therefore de-satting and setting off the alarm that was attached to her.  Pain control was her biggest issue.   

Her "outpatient" surgery became a 2 night/3 day stay in the hospital at Batson.  uggg…  I won't even go into detail about how uncomfortable that hospital room is.  Like I'm sure all are.  Someone needs to tell Eli Manning to donate BEDS/COTS next time instead of money!  ;)  But after planning to go home the same day, she vomited twice --- and we couldn't quite figure out why.  Could have been her stomach pressure from surgery, could have been the antibiotics, she could have gagged on the gunk you cough up after anesthesia, or she could have had the stomach bug that we ALL had earlier in the week.  So if you are vomiting = you will not be leaving the hospital!   She also had a slight reaction to the morphine and her face turned really red for a day… and looked swollen… not sure we will ever give her morphine again (just like her mommy!)

She refused to drink anything for the first 24 hours.  Which kept us another night!  Matt got us Smoothies one day for lunch, and she finally drank that!  Around noon that day I'd say she finally woke up and hasn't looked back!  I think she ate 3 chicken nuggets that day.  :)

1 week later, she is walking across the entire kitchen.  More than she's ever walked in her life!  She's still not sleeping great, but she is also used to sleeping on her belly.  N.O.T.H.I.N.G. holds this girl back or down for long.  Alot of people have asked about her belly surgery at birth… I am posting a few old pics for reference here.  But HOPEFULLY she has her "forever belly" now unless she decides she wants a belly button later.  We chose not to give her a belly button for now.  You can live without one of those.  

Our dear friend Amy had a baby the same day as Merritt's surgery.  Mati Claire asked "Does the baby have a belly button or no belly button?"       sweet girl.  bellybuttons are optional around here.  :)

at birth July 2012
After first surgery at 4 days old.  Really bruised but flat.
The very beginning of the hernia - around 1 month old. 
6 months old 
12 months old
Here is a picture of her surgeon Dr. Berch before surgery; and then immediately after in recovery.

18 months old; after the second latest surgery January 2014. 
A BIG HUGE THANK YOU to everyone who prayed for her, sent messages, who came to visit, who sent goodies, balloons, gifts, and food!  Thank you to my family who helped me out with Mati Claire and Mattox during our 3 days in the hospital.  We appreciate you all and love you very much!  xoxo

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Christmas Part 1 of 2

This post was actually "saved" and I meant to post it last week, but time has disappeared.  Will be posting alot today to catch everyone up!  

Christmas Part 1
I'm gonna do one long run-on sentence because its really about how I feel at the moment…. I can't catch my breath….and I can't stop running.  My house and life at the moment is a marathon.  For those of you who actually read and/or care… I know there aren't many of you out there.

Friday we got out of school, my kids have been on the Naughty List ever since, Mattox especially, I discovered he wrote all over one my dining room chairs with an ink pen just to name one incident, I think he has a delayed onset of the terrible 3's, start Monday with cleaning with the new housecleaners, start cooking:  corn casserole, chocolate pie, crock pot salisbury steaks, mashed potatoes, breakfast casserole, sausage Rotel dip, and not to forget the endless supply of ShrinkyDinks for the kids while the oven is hot; my sink has no bottom = the dishes.will.not.stop… wrap more presents, make the promised Gingerbread house with the kids, Merritt starts getting inconsolable and extremely fussy; discovered the new housecleaner put my cleaning toothbrush in my regular toothbrush holder and I ended up using the wrong brush by accident (ugh!) …. Merritt didn't sleep for 2 nights straight for more than 5 minutes at a time, Matt is working during all of this so I am single mom for the most part, Matt decides to take Mitt back to the ER and discovers she has an ear infection, Mattox's eyes and cold progressively got worse over the week and his eyes start draining green gunk, antibiotics for 2 kids, Christmas Eve comes and we put out the Reindeer food, cookies and milk for Santa, in-laws come over for Christmas Eve dinner, Santa doesn't arrive until midnight because the kids didn't go to bed until close to 10pm,  Matt decides to work 3 hours on Christmas morning so he wakes the entire house up at 6:30 am to open presents before he has to go in, while he is at work I put 95% of their new toys together, deboxed/broke down 100 boxes, took out 5 full extra large trash bags, cooked breakfast casserole, did at least 3 more loads of dishes from the night before, my kids won't.stop.fighting.this.week, manage to get my kitchen clean again and my living room picked up just in time for Matt's family to arrive for Round 2 and dinner; great time with great family!; spend all day cleaning again the day after Christmas while Matt makes phone calls to the hospitals; we never heard anything from surgery and they failed to tell us that Merritt's surgery was canceled because the surgeon is no longer at Baptist; we miraculously get rescheduled at UMC with the same surgeon; but UMC has lived up to its name in the bedside manner in all this; just as my parents walk in the door, Mati Claire throws up in the kitchen… 1 hour later followed by Merritt…. Matt proceeds to tell me that he is done for the day because he has to get up at 3am to work in Natchez and he was going to bed…meanwhile I sleep on the couch because Matt is snoring louder than a freight train… I was awoken by UMC calling at 7:30 am for a 1 hour conversation about Merritt's life history which therefore made us late to our cardiology appointment at Baptist… Merritt screamed like someone was killing her during the entire appointment (not only does she need a sedative but so does mommy and I am joking about sedatives but one can dream right?); on the way out I discovered Baptist has a new Einstein Bros. Bagels -- which is just awesome and has made my day a little better…. the rest of my family will be here tonight for Christmas Round 3; Merritt's surgery was scheduled as outpatient at UMC on Monday…. is it 2014 yet?

Best bed hair ever!
My big reader!
My big Brave Hunter in his new camo!
MC and cousin Kendall
Merritt in her OWN new chair!  She loved it! (and MC is getting a new one if you can see how small hers is next to it)
Miley side family pic Take 1.  Kendall, MC, Mattox, and me on front row; Rachel, Uncle Aaron, Nana, Miranda "Ray", Miss Karen on middle row; Papaw, Merritt, Matt, and Mr. Holley on the back row.
Matt's face is going on FB in the near future.  ;)
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