Tuesday, March 30, 2010

What a week!

It all started with a birthday party where a young mother brought her child who had a fever and cough... a few days later Gage had a fever and a cough which developed into the croup, and a few days after that Eli started to cough which developed into RSV!

I was worried that Eli would catch what Gage had, but never imagined he would end up in the hospital! He didn't have a temperature all week and was basically pretty happy, but I took him in on Friday since he was starting to wheeze. An x-ray of his lungs came back clear, but he tested positive for RSV. Since his oxygen levels were low, our doctor wanted him to be admitted so he could be on oxygen and be monitored closely.

He didn't like the oxygen tube taped to his face at first, but eventually he got used to it.

From the doctor's office I had to walk my baby over to the hospital, and hold him down while he was poked, prodded and taped. It broke my heart and my tears flowed right along with his. I am still emotional just remembering it! It is horrible watching your baby go through all of that. When Gage got so sick last week for the first time I thought that was more than I could handle, but I never imagined it would get even worse so soon!

Eli spent most of his hospital stay in our arms or our bouncy seat we were able to bring from home. We used the crib only for exams and diaper changes.

Thankfully Eli was a trooper. His oxygen levels came back up to normal quickly, and instead of taking a turn for the worse, as many young RSV patients do, he only improved. He was admitted at 5:00pm on Friday and was released at 10:30am on Sunday.

Our sweet babysitter came over on Friday night to stay with Gage while Craig came up to the hospital and brought some necessities for us, then my sister came on Saturday, and Grandma and Grandpa E came on Sunday. We were so blessed to have friends and family there for us!

Dr. Swanson gave Eli a clean bill of health on Tuesday at our check-up!

The biggest lesson I learned from this whole thing is: The next time we show up somewhere and someone is sick there, we are turning right back around and heading home!

Monday, March 22, 2010

This sick stuff really stinks!

This is what a long night of coughing and sneezing will do to you:

My poor baby! He is miserable. I had to post a picture today that was more accurate. The last one was taken on Saturday before the "draining" began. I hope he beats this croup to a pulp, and fast! And my second baby is just about to face his fight with it I'm afraid. The cough is already starting...

Saturday, March 20, 2010


1. a viral infection of the vocal cords, voice box, and trachea
2. an ugly invader of my poor 14 month old's body right now!

Gage has had a blessed 14, almost 15 months of healthiness thus far. No ear infections, temperatures, vomiting, or any other flu or virus. Now, I have taken precautions to keep him healthy, but I wouldn't say even as much as other moms out there...I let him play in the mall play area, sit in grocery carts and restaurant highchairs, play in the church nursery, etc. So I was beginning to think that my son has an amazing immune system!

Well, I think he does have an amazing immune system, but it can't hold up to all those nasty germs out there forever, so his time has come to endure an illness. And my time has come to toughen up!

I knew my biggest struggle as a mother would be my overactive compassion. Ever heard of such a thing? Well I have it. For example, when we were little and my sister got hurt or sick, I would cry too. When I have watched Craig get hurt playing basketball I have been sick (not literally) with worry and pain for him! So I knew that having children would mean enduring lots of my own pain, because kids, especially boys, get hurt.

And so it begins...my Gager started coughing on Thursday afternoon. By Thursday night he had a fever of 101. Oh my heart was hurting! On Saturday morning I took him to the pediatrician (thank goodness they're open on Saturdays!) after finding he was much worse at 5:30am. We found out he has croup, a cold with laryngitis in adults, a more serious condition in babies...especially 3 month olds, so we are praying that Eli stays healthy! If he does I can say he has an amazing immune system too because how in the world do we keep Gager and his germs away in the same household?!

It is so hard to see your child so miserable and not be able to do a thing about it but give lots of love. I miss my joyful, exhuberant babe, and can't wait to have him back! In the meantime I will be giving lots of love, and working on not falling apart myself when the inevitable happens...

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

3 Months!

Dear Eli,

You did it! You endured the bear chair...with almost a smile! I knew it was just a matter of time, and I had a feeling that the 3 month mark just might be the ticket! Good things have happened since last month. We finally determined that you have a bad case of colic, and in the same month you have shown that you are on your way out of it! For the past 2 weeks you have been more content overall and have been crying for obvious reasons, such as when you are hungry or tired, rather than just crying.

We have really bonded in the past month. It does my heart good to receive all of your smiles and stares! I am the lucky one who gets you to smile the most...Daddy has to admit it too! Instead of cringing when Gage comes around you (since he used to poke at you so much!) you are smiling at him too. He still thinks you're pretty great too.

You are such a big boy! You are already wearing 6 month clothes! Our arms are thankful that you don't need as much walking and bouncing!

We are so thankful that you are growing healthy and strong, and that you are sleeping and eating better! We continue to pray that you feel secure and content, and that you will one day choose to follow Jesus. You are such a sweet boy Eli, you melt my heart everyday!

Loving you always,

Eli, 3 months
Gage, 3 months

Saturday, March 13, 2010

little eyes watching

You know what bugs me to no end these days? BIG kids in the LITTLE kids play area at the mall, and mothers who just drop them off there like it's a daycare while they shop!

So...today we had a little "run-in" with a mother who did just that.

It seems like every time we take Gage to the play area at our mall there are always kids running around that are just too old to be there, and I worry about Gage getting trampled. This afternoon there were about 4 of them. I could take it no longer and finally said to one of the rowdy had-to-be-at-least-8-year-old girls, "Really, you are too old to be in here. But if you are in here you need to calm down so you don't trample one of these little ones. Okay?"

She just looked at me and kind of nodded, then proceeded to tell one of the other girls about it and eventually made faces behind my back (according to my observant husband). As we were getting ready to go, their mother came back to get them, and my first thought was, "Oh sure, now that we're leaving!" Craig had a different thought. His was to go tell that mother a thing or two!

Inwardly I was cheering him on as I followed behind with the stroller. When I approached I heard the mother snidely say, "Just wait until your kids are older." And Craig responded with, "Yeah, and we won't be putting them in there." And then she noticed our sweatshirts and said while walking away, "It figures, you're Iowa State fans..."

So what does that have to do with anything?! Anyway lady, you'd be hard-pressed not to find an Iowa State fan in Ames. That remark did it. I angrily called out, "Well it's no wonder your kids behave that way!" Oh boy. Wrong. Thing. To. Say.

She came back toward me, and of the many thoughts going through my head, one was: Oh no, what did I do?

She said something like, "You don't even know me," And I said, "Well I can see that you're very outspoken," (and rude) I was thinking. The "conversation" soon ended and we all went our separate ways.

I confess that I have a temper. And when someone is rude to me, I find myself wanting to be rude back. I usually find some satisfaction in that, even though I know it's not right. But today I walked away feeling differently. One reason was because nothing positive came from the whole thing. She would most likely continue to let her big kids play there, probably more often because she was so ticked off at people like us. And another reason was I was so convicted by the thought of, what if someone I know from church witnessed that exchange? What if that woman showed up at our church as a first time visitor and saw me there? What a hypocrite I would look like!

Most of all I felt ashamed of acting that way in front of my son, who will soon be aware of right and wrong and someone I need to be able to answer to. I don't want my children following my bad example. To the world I'm sure my comment wasn't so bad. It was the truth wasn't it?! But I should be different than "the world". I am a Christ follower. And I am pretty certain that Christ wouldn't have responded that way!

I am so glad I didn't just walk away today feeling justified. I felt ashamed. I realized that especially now that I am a mother, I want to be modeling the right thing. So next time I run into a rude person I will try to swallow my pride, bite my tongue, respond in kindness, and remember the little eyes watching me...

Friday, March 12, 2010

Say Cheese

An indication of our week...

Oh how I love that smile!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

A New Place to Sit

The other morning I was making breakfast and happened to look around the corner to find this:

It was such a funny sight! Craig and I laughed so hard. I guess Gage has decided that his old bouncy seat is his new recliner!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Re-Thinking Things

Okay, what is my problem?? Why am I taking this colic thing so hard?! Things could be so much worse. My sister just shared with me an awesome article by a pediatrician whose fourth child started her life just like my Eli is now! The title of the article is "Re-Thinking Fussy Babies". So much great information to consider, but the golden nugget I take from it is that I need to change my thinking.

About a month ago my spirits started falling big time and I have now found myself in exhaustion/frustration/resentment mode, and I hate it! I hate being totally in love with my baby one minute, then totally frustrated and upset with him the next!

So instead of thinking of him as a fussy, challenging baby, I am going to start thinking of him as a "high needs" baby. He needs extra love, extra holding, extra patience, and as his blessed mother, it is my job to give it to him with a grateful heart!

My hope is that if I look at the situation differently, I will have the energy and the patience to give Eli just what he needs. Now that's the kind of Mama I want to be!

Here is a video of a happy moment with my sweet boy, and a look inside of what I have to put up with from his father...

Friday, March 5, 2010

Refined by Fire

"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade—kept in heaven for you, who through faith are shielded by God's power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed." 1Peter 1:3-7

We all have our own "fire" to walk through, our trials to endure. No one knows them as we do, as we seemingly face them alone. But God promises us this: "Do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand." Isaiah 41:10

Lord, may my faith be refined, may it be proved genuine and may I praise and honor you through this small fire we are walking through. I know there are much bigger trials we could be facing, help me to look outwardly rather than in. I am so thankful Lord for what I have been given...

Thursday, March 4, 2010


Well, it's official. Eli has colic. And not just a 3 hour a day colic, it's all day colic. I know I've been talking, hopefully not complaining, about it for awhile now so I know it's not a surprise to anyone. I've just been holding out hope that we could blame it on an allergy or acid reflux and get it fixed!

Now I can say we've tried everything...different formulas, acid reflux medicine, chiropractic adjustments, a natural supplement called "Calm", and as of noon today, got his poopy checked. In a way I wanted something to show up there to give us a reason and a solution, something non-serious of course. But it is also comforting to know that there isn't anything wrong, he's just extremely fussy.

These past 11 weeks have been the longest of my life (Craig would agree). Really, what is God trying to teach me/us through this? I say that a little exasperatedly because honestly sometimes I am angry at God for not answering my prayers for an easy baby since I am also caring for a one year old at the same time. BUT I am holding on to that it is surely something good, and I am cherishing the happy, smiley times with my precious boy when I get them. I know there are women out there who so desperately want a child and would take a colicky one in a second, so I know I am so blessed to be able to hold mine. I try to remember that often!

But I still wonder how much longer will it last?