Monday, December 28, 2009

Theory of seven. (It's stupid.)

Happy Birthday to Jason! 37 years old today. Thir-ty se-ven. That's a lot of syllables. That's old. And that means that in 47 more days, I too will be...well, never mind.

I don't like numbers with 7's in them when we're talking age. Seven has an extra syllable which takes longer to say and, in my opinion, makes the number seem larger. Nicholas will be 7 on his next birthday. Se-ven. Too old. I don't like it. But to turn thir-ty se-ven. Ugh. 38 doesn't have as many syllables, so that won't be so bad. Or even 39 or 40. But thir-ty se-ven...

I can con myself into believing that I'm a year younger than Jason because he was born in '72 and me in '73. I can also pretend that there's a bigger age difference than there really is because he's older than me by for-ty se-ven days, and for-ty se-ven is such a big number. See how that works? I think when my birthday comes, I'll call it thirty-sept. (Don't say I didn't learn anything in 4 years of French.)

So anyway, Jason had a relatively uneventful birthday this year. No presents, no party. He's made it quite clear throughout the years that his birthday is just another day. If I were to ever try throwing him a party, it would be grounds for divorce. Blake was a bit disappointed that there was no party for Daddy. So to make up for it, I am to have a princess party for me in February. Ok. You're all invited.

It wasn't a totally boring birthday. Jason did participate in Lexi's PT today. And he shoveled the driveway. In shorts and a t-shirt. In Indiana. Stupide. (I did that spelling on purpose. It's that French thing again. I think I'll start using that word: stupide. Because stu-PEED sounds extra stu...well, nevermind.)

Sunday, December 27, 2009

I'm a loser.

Christmas is over and my house is littered with Playmobile and Bakugon. Watch where you step.

The holiday was great. We always love when Jason's brother Aaron and his fiance come into town and we spent a few days in Kokomo with them and the rest of Jason's family. We travelled up to Elkhart on the 23rd and it was a slooooooow trip because of the black ice. But we made it there safely in about 4 hours compared to the usual 2.5. We celebrated Christmas with my family on the 24th and then Santa made a drop off that night which the boys enjoyed on Christmas morning. 3 Christmas's in 4 days. No wonder my house is a disaster. But I won't complain. We are so fortunate. I need to be better about giving. I receive sooooooo much.

The big gift this year was the Wii. Thanks Mom and Dad! And I'm ready for a road trip so I can try out my new GPS. Thanks Jim and Connie! Blake doesn't have much to do yet with the Wii, but will watch and offer unsolicited advice. He did play one round of boxing with me. I lost. Nicholas has already becoming a bowling and tennis pro. I lost to him too. So I got out their new Operation game. I'm really tired of losing.

I went for a physical on the 23rd with my new doctor. I actually had Dr. S. as my doctor 6 years ago but had to change due to insurance. Luckily I was able to return to him. My blood pressure was great so I no longer need b/p medications. I haven't taken them in a few months due to the prescription running out, but no matter. I think all my walking is helping.

This last pregnancy about ruined me. Okay, I shouldn't blame the pregnancy. I've been really fortunate to lose the baby weight right away in all 3 pregnancies. Unfortunately with this last pregnancy, I lost the weight but then sat on my rear for 67 days in a hospital room. And ate nothing but fast food on my way to and from the hospital. So the baby weight that I lost so quickly, made a speedy return. And then some.

I started walking right before the start of the school year and for the first time in my life have been able to stick with it. So far. It's only been about 5 months, but before now, I don't think I stuck with any routine exercise plan for more than 5 days. And I'm actually enjoying it. I prefer to walk in the cold. 30 degrees is great if it's not too windy and the roads are dry. I don't like getting started, but about 15 minutes in, when my body has warmed up, I feel like I could walk for hours! I don't, but I would if I didn't have responsibilities to get home to. I usually walk about 45 minutes, 3-4 times a week. I've only lost about 5 lbs because I still eat sugar for breakfast and salt for lunch and dinner. (Don't ask about my snacking habits.) So there's a bunch of room for improvement. But it's a start. My pants are reeeeeally tight.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

No more excuses...

My pregnancy, Alexis's birth, and all her medical issues were a great excuse to put off doing what needed to be done. I'll admit it--I used her. But I finally sucked it up and called the dentist. I have a lot of work that needs to be done and had to put it on hold. I HATE that stupid dentist drill. It's the one thing in the entire world that has ever caused me to have a panic attack.

So yesterday, since Jason was off work for the holidays and could watch the kids, mom and aunt Paula took me to the dentist. Since I have to be medicated, I have to be driven. And yes, it took 2 people to get me there. 2 people. But not because I put up a fight and have to be restrained to get me into the dentist's office. And not 2 people because they love me so much and are doing this out of the kindness of their hearts (even though that is kinda true). Nope. 2 people because the find me soooooo highly entertaining when I am under the influence of powerful hypnotic drugs.

If you ask Paula, she will be more than happy to provide all the entertaining details of previous dentist visits. Mom has witnessed a few choice moments herself. Yesterday wasn't much different. At least I kept my antics confined to the dentist office and went straight home. That's better than the time I put on a show for all the customers at the Noblesville Panera Bread.

Of course I'm glad that Alexis is healthy. I just need to find a new excuse to get out of going to the dentist.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

I'm getting a bit ahead of myself...

One of the things that our genetics doctor told us months ago, was to enjoy Alexis now. Because right now we can enjoy her just being a baby. Right now there are no other big medical concerns, no behavior issues. I clarified to him that there would be none of those concerns in the future either. I wouldn't allow it.

And I can usually block all of those future concerns out and just enjoy her precious babyness. She's so darn cute! And so happy. Her brothers adore her. Her parents think she's perfect. And she is. Extra chromosome or not. She's darn perfect.

But there are those moments when my mind wanders and I wonder what the future holds for her. I don't think much about medical issues or behaviors, but more about her adulthood: where will she live? Will she go to college or work? Will she always need some sort of adult supervision? I try to block it out, but sometimes I wonder.

But then I was talking to my aunt tonight. She is so excited to see her son who comes into town for the holidays. She hasn't seen him for a year. My brother-in-law will also be coming into town next week. We usually get to see him twice a year. Ugh. I realize my boys are only 4 and 6 right now, but the thought of seeing them only once or twice a year is unbearable! I already dread empty next syndrome. Might have to start working on them now to stay home and attend IUPUI. Maybe we can build an apartment over the garage...

So if Alexis lives at home for the rest of her life, I think I'll be okay with that. I don't want to send any of my kids out into that big, bad world. More and more people with Down Syndrome are living in independent environments, and maybe Alexis will too. It's a long way off and it's not something I need to worry about right now. But I also think that once she graduates from high school, maybe I'll just ground her to her room. For eternity.

Monday, December 7, 2009

8 months!

8 months old today! Maybe I'll buy her a pony!

I was looking at some pictures the other day (we have a few. Have you met JoJo? We have paparazzi in the family). I was looking at some pictures from before she had her heart surgery. I remember thinking, "she doesn't look sick at all." I will always admit I am biased, but I remember these thoughts of how "the heart condition can't possibly be that bad since she looks so good." But I compare those pictures to how she looks now, and it's amazing the change. She didn't look bad before, but now she's even gorgeous-er.

The occupational therapist came today and we showed off our new trick (I sound like I taught my puppy to beg). Alexis turned over from her stomach to her back, which she does on a regular basis. The OT was very impressed and also pleased that you can tell she's trying, and close to succeeding, at flipping from her back to her front. The OT also sat her up and I couldn't believe how close she is to sitting up unassisted. It almost brought tears to my eyes. Amazing how emotional this little girl makes me sometimes. Before her heart surgery, Alexis would be placed on her stomach and she would just lay there, barely even lifting up her head. You've come a long way, baby!

I'm loving the holiday season. Last year I was in a fog with all the news and feeling so overwhelmed by it all. (We learned of the d/s on Nov. 21 and of the duodenal atresia on Dec. 18) so I'm making up for it this year. The trees went up the Saturday after Thanksgiving. I have only 2 presents left to buy (I'll take voluteers for anyone who wants to wrap!) and the cards (with the exception of a few for which I need to confirm addresses) went out this morning. I've never been this far ahead of schedule. And the boys are so fun to watch, especially at this time of year. You should have seen Nicholas's face this morning when he realized it had snowed. Such joy! I wish adults felt that kind of joy with such simple things. (Read Facebook. NO adult was happy about the snow this morning.)

Side note: when I just wrote the above paragraph, I had to flip back to the very first post to get the December date. It was almost amusing to read of my relief that there was "no heart defect" and how upset I was that she'd be in the NICU for a whole 3 or 4 weeks. HA!

Hope you are enjoying the holiday season as much as I am this this year!

Thursday, December 3, 2009


I had to take Alexis to the doctor's office today for her first RSV shot. (Drove my SUV for an RSV. I RSVP'd ASAP.) Apparently, RSV is a respiratory virus that most kids get, but usually it just manifests like a typical cold. But some kids, like kids with respiratory issues (that's not Lexi) or kids that were premature (not Lexi) or have special circumstances (Lexi) can have complications if they get RSV. So the doctor ordered the shots and insurance agreed to pay (thank goodness since the nurse said it can cost up to three thousand dollars). Unfortunately, she gets this shot once a month from now until probably April. Ugh. And the nurse said that the more her weight increases, the higher the dosage and by next month she may have to get it in 2 doses. 2 doses means 2 shots. My poor baby. We had to hang out for 20 minutes afterwards to make sure she didn't have any adverse reaction to it (what is this? an allergy shot?) which she didn't. After this one, we won't have to wait the 20 minutes any more, but it worked out great since we ended up at the doctor's office as the same time as my girlfriend and we stopped and grabbed a latte afterwards. Mmmmmm, venti, non-fat, no foam, carmel latte. And a blueberry muffin. But I digress...

Today she weighed in at 14 lbs 11 oz. I thought that the baby carrier was feeling a bit heavier...