Saturday, February 5, 2011

Happy Groundhog Day (Warning: very long) the rascal didn't see his shadow and we are getting an early spring. I am not sure about where you live but we are encased in snow. It is quite beautiful but it will be a long time before we defrost...and we are due for 4-7 more inches today. Oh well. Hopefully that will mean some good snuggle time. I know I just sent out the update from December and it pretty much left you hanging with our January letters but I'll begin again with the issues.

While rereading the update I realize I had forgotten that Alex had an ear infection in December. Part of my whole recent bout with memory loss, I suppose. Anyway, Alex has been home sick from school this whole week. She began by running fevers Sunday that ended Tuesday/Wednesday. On Tuesday we were sent home early due to snow. Wednesday we had a snow day, so thankfully she didn't miss a full 5 days of school. But she has been making up her own work and homeschooling herself with 'schoolbooks' we bought her, reading, and making crafts. :)

Well, when the fevers stopped her coughing increased. Thursday night she couldn't even catch her breath. Friday afternoon I took her to the doctor and she is being treated for atypical pneumonia, exasperated by her asthma, and an ear infection. I was pretty lucky since Nick stayed home with her Monday and Tuesday, snowday Wednesday, Roger stayed home Thursday and Robin stayed with her Friday. I have missed so much school this year, I keep expecting to get called in and reprimanded. Yet, when I go to the office to request early release for doctor appointments, or I take off because of illnesses, they are all about taking care of my family. I do believe they understand how much I love my job, and how much it pains me to lose time with my students, but that I need to take care of my own children too. So very glad.

So Alex is on a steroid, antibiotic and we have a nebulizer for when it gets really bad. It scares her to go on a coughing jag so deep. All we can do is hold her, give her water and tell her it's okay. She gets very tired too.

A few weeks ago we had a very huge scare with Kath.

Monday I walked past Kath and rubbed her head. She said, "OUCH." I walked back to check on her, it was a huge bump. When I looked through her hair to see it I realized that not only was it a good half inch raised off her head, but it was purple, about a silver dollar size.

Have you ever had a time when you are so scared or upset that you feel like your brain is shattering, you can't think? Sadly I have, more than once. This was one of those times. When I called the closed doctor's office I couldn't understand the phone prompts, what I should do. Roger had to take care of it talking to the oncall doctor. We went to the ER. On the way there she began to complain that her head hurt, but we realized it was only when her head bounced with a bump into her car seat. After waiting a bit, we garnered a bed in the hallway with other children. One girl burned her hands on sauce (horrible blisters!). Another was so dehydrated from being sick she had an IV. Kath seemed peppy and healthy, but whenever anyone parted her hair they all said the same thing, "Oh MY!" It was finally decided that although we didn't know of any fall, it was a bump from a fall and not a growth, as my dark thoughts were afraid of.

We had to watch for lack-of-balance. We reminded them she has cerebral palsy.

We had to watch for slurred speech. She is a stroke survivor with speech delays.

Vision problems? Again...the stroke left her with vision issues.

Projectile vomiting. Ok, that would be different from normal and we'd know if things were worse if she did that.

I took off from work the next day, Tuesday, and brought her to her regular doctor. They did a thorough exam. The day after, Wednesday, I got a phone call from her physical therapist at school. She had fallen. She forgot to put a note in Kath's book because it didn't seem to be a huge bump and things got distracting at school. As a teacher, I completely understood (and she was very apologetic). Kath had been working on the low balance beam. She fell off, bumped her butt. But when trying to push up to standing, lost her balance and fell backwards, hitting her head on a chair. (Kath kept telling me she hit her head, but without a note, I didn't completely believe her.) After this, she cried for a few minutes, Pam held her, then she went on to finish the beam, and did an obstacle course! Didn't seem bad. Everyone felt really bad when Kath went back to school and they saw how bad her head looked.

That Thursday night, while eating dinner, Roger asked me what was wrong with my hands. I looked at them and my fingers were blue. Just the fingers. They had been hurting a little, but they were a very weird blue, I couldn't move my neck without pain and I couldn't get a full lungful of air. I went onto and ...well, you know how it usually scares you by telling you about 5 things you could have? This time it just said, "Call your physician immediately."

Freaked out? Yes. But I got the girls to bed, and went to work the next day. I had also been feeling like an elephant was sitting on my chest. And I was/am having memory issues. At school, I spoke to our nurse and she told me I needed to go to the doctor. So I made an appointment and left early. I was sent for tests. Xray of my neck and head, CT, bone density, and a series of tests for nerves in my arms. Came back with some damage to my neck, I need to go to an orthopedic surgeon. Joy.

Anyway. Despite all the craziness, I think some of my stuff was aggravated by stress so I am trying to chill out some, get back into my writing.

Robin is back! Robin is back into our child care mix! Unfortunately for her time with us started taking care of Kath who was sick and then she got sick herself last week. But we are hoping that now things will ease up! Especially since we have Robin, Darlene and Nick! I need an army of help! :D

I have restarted my writing. Roger and I had a 'retreat' a couple of Saturdays ago for the Writing Project. It helped to energize us both with our teaching of writing to be around teachers just as passionate about teaching as we are. Thanks to Karen who not only took on taking care of the girls for the day BUT also braved dance class for Alex!!

We always feel like we are going from putting out one fire to another fire. So we are trying to regroup. It will help that this week while my neck is sore it doesn't hurt like in past weeks so I should be able to clean. Yea(yuck).

Sorry this is so long. Felt like I had to try to catch up. :) Happy early spring!

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