Monday, September 26, 2011

Saturday morning with the orchid trees

Zupe and I took off after breakfast to make some photos of the blooming orchid trees. They are gorgeous and something I look forward to each year. In fact, when asked last year about what I'd miss if/when we moved from Australia, my answer was immediate. "Orchid trees."

Friday, September 09, 2011

Busy, busy, busy week - with a surprise ending

From Zuperfliegen
Zupe had his 3 month sleep study on Monday. We managed to arrive on-time and much to my surprise were free to wander about (= get supper) until 6:30. They were very surprised when I responded to their "bedtime" question with 8 PM. (What would they have said to last night's almost 10 PM turn-in? In our defense, he did have a long and late nap (3+ hours waking after 5 PM) AND we were partying. Partying - that's always an acceptable excuse for a late night, right? There isn't a minimum age for that, is there? I can't see anything that contradicts that in my little yellow baby's first year in Qld book.)

Monday was the sleep study. I tried to get him to bed earlier - but I think it was likely closer to 8:30 before he both drifted off and I could thump him into bed without him waking and staying awake. (It took 2 tries.) He slept well - until the nurse woke him (and me) at 3 AM because he had wet himself and his bed and he was cold and restless. By the time we had him and his bed changed, he was WIDE AWAKE. It took 45 minutes or so of hand watching then nursing then hand watching then... until he was once again sleeping. I spent the rest of the night jumping from dream to dream to dream - mostly about getting results of the sleep study - sometimes good, sometimes bad. Each dream I'd think this is just a dream and then I'd "wake up" to the real result appointment and ...

Tuesday we saw a physical therapist who believes he is delayed a few weeks (4 to 6 is my estimation) that is consistent with the time he spent in the hospital - not eating well, not waking well, and having a limited stimulus environment. She doesn't think he needs therapy only MORE TUMMY TIME. (This will not please the boy.)

Wednesday - after a little "fender-bender" (oh joy) - we saw the chiropractor who noted tightness in the left neck and right hip as well as subluxation in the left occipital bone and left sphenoid. He thought these could affect breathing and made adjustments with his handy, spring-loaded adjuster instrument. Zupe was asleep until the thumping started. He woke, seemed momentarily disturbed, then relaxed and enjoyed the massage. I'm assigned to massage his neck and hips, practice moving his arms and legs - particularly opposing limbs together, and hanging him upside down to allow his spine to stretch out. (We haven't done the latter. That has to be supremely well timed. Too soon after eating and you create a "waterfall". Too far after a feeding and he is likely to become SAD. It was a good experience. I felt positive about having something I could do that might be helpful.

Thursday was the real appointment to get the results of the sleep test. We met with a doctor we had never encountered before who told us the sleep study was PERFECT. The number of apneic episodes was within the normal range for a baby of his age. He was normally saturated both on and off oxygen. Our secret hope was that Zupe would be reduced to only night-time oxygen - but we were discharged. NO MORE OXYGEN!!! Not in the morning, not in the evening, not at night!! I was told to wait for 1 month before returning our oxygen canisters in case we encountered a problem. (That is a bit nerve wracking - waiting to be sure he doesn't crash and burn.)

After, Zupe and I met with a new pediatrician who was fabulous. He spent over an hour discussing my concerns and his: why the oxygen? eczema, developmental delay, plagiocephaly (or my baby has a flat spot on his head), feeding solids... What a difference from ped-one. Wow. Why did I delay?

Then, we headed to the Mater Mother's hospital to visit the special care unit nurses, the midwives on the eleventh floor, and the lactation consultants. By the end Zupe, having not napped all morning and early afternoon, was a sobbing heap and we had to limp away. (Sorry Gail - he is usually a happy boy.)

YES! We are FREE!!
From Zuperfliegen

(First official "I've got no tapes 'cause I don't need 'em" photo!)

Sunday, September 04, 2011

Happy Australian Father's Day!

From Zuperfliegen

from your number-one Australian son!

And, his mom!!

I love you, Kevin....I mean, Dad.

This house is under a python watch...

which I think is better than a zombie watch or a plaque watch. Yes. Definitely better.

To tell our story backward, something that is becoming a tradition for this blog, Friday we RETURNED from our "get away" trip to the Gold Coast. (Kevin was actually there working. It was only Zupe and I who were getting away from the rat race of Hibiscus Circuit.) I had this excellent idea that while Kevin was busy Friday morning, I'd bop over to IKEA and pick up two items. I knew exactly what I wanted and where to find them. This was a very good thing.

I arrived about 11:30 giving me just over an hour to shop before I had to drive back south to retrieve Kevin. (I hadn't realized it would take an hour - which is longer than it takes to get to IKEA from our house! - for the trip. I'm pretty terrible at those "its on the way" estimations of just how close things are. Case in point - the Springfield Mall is not "just outside Troy". This estimation skill is also the reason that I once had only one square of a soda cracker to eat between Ashville and Durham NC. But, that's another story.) So, I unloaded the sleeping - now awake - Zupe-man and hurried inside.

Where he began crying.

Retire to parents' room. Change baby. Nurse baby. Load baby into stroller.

I now have 30 minutes.

Hit the sales floor.

Baby starts screaming.

Find another parents' room, prepare a bottle, and encourage speed slurping. Burp baby, load him up, and while he's not happy, he's a bit quieter.

Ten minutes left.

I really tried to buzz through the living room and child's room sections, but every person and his grandmother were there. And, grandmothers do not walk quickly. Nor do they make easily passable objects what with the way they are linked arm and arm across the walkway with random child/grandchild. Even the siren of Zupe in distress could not part those seas.

Still, I found the sofa cushions - but the style I had seen before - granted, it was years ago - was no longer sold. Nor could I find any teething rails in the child's section. (Maybe they never existed.)

****Now, if you are Kevin, and you probably are, you're asking me "When are you getting to the pythons? How much longer?" I give you a quiet, puzzled and slightly hurt look, become a bit jangled and confused and my story telling slows WAY down.*****

Zupe did settle down once back in the car. Me, I have a headache. We arrive back in Broadbeach with enough time to buy a hamburger in McDonald's drivethru and pick up Kevin.


Home around 3:30. Take pain medication. Supper at 5. Maybe eating will help my head. I call for Chinese but can't find my car keys and must borrow Kevin's. (He doesn't understand how I can misplace my keys and be rather unconcerned. I know they'll turn up. They're in the house amongst all the bags we've unpacked. Somewhere.)

I take Zupe into Kevin's room to watch "thirtysomething" and nurse him. Six-ish. Maybe six-thirty-ish. I now am feeling a bit nauseated and lights make me feel worse.

Kevin comes in and tells me that Zelda has eaten a diaper. Or, at least torn it to bits. I have no two brain cells to rub together so I tell him to call the Pet ER. (I try to call Rob to ask him to think...but his phone isn't talking to my phone. I don't know where my keys are anyway.)

Kevin replaces Zupe's oxygen tapes. (Well done!) and carries him out to the car. I take Zelda and the diaper bag. Oh, and the bucket in case I vomit in the car.

To the ER. They take Zelda to the back. Kevin and Zupe sit on the bench. I check out where the bathroom is then go outside to sit where it is cool and dark. And, where I could discretely vomit in a bush in a hurry.

I don't vomit. Zelda does. (She had a little chemical persuasion.)

They find only a little of the paper/plastic and not the fluffy absorbent (= obstructive) inside material. They offer to admit her with IV fluids but we decline.

Everybody and bucket back into the car. I keep my eyes closed and the window open.

We arrive back home to find the front doors standing open. Both doors. Wide open. From the backseat I can see my computer and my camera on my desk - so I'm pretty, pretty, pretty sure there's been no theft. Kevin goes in first. "Hello". Checks every room. Checks behind every door. No one in the house. Nothing missing.

It is pretty obvious that I simply "forgot" to close the doors on my way out of the house. It has been open for close to 90 minutes. Plenty of time for a big-ass PYTHON (there it is!) to slither into the house!!

Hence - a python watch.

Now, practically, I think it is highly unlikely that a python would have come inside. I don't think they'd be out traveling in the cool evening. I think they'd all be holed up and watching TV. Dingoes, on the other hand....