Monday, August 31, 2009

Como Zoo and the State Fair

Friday we got out by ourselves. My cousin stayed with Dawson at our place and stayed overnight. We visited Tyler, Dan hadn't seen him in a few weeks. Then we went to the State Fair and stayed at the Sheraton overnight.

Saturday morning I walked to the hospital (3 blocks) to give them more pumped milk and walked back. My cousin met us at the Como Zoo with Dawson and another little boy Dawson's age that she babysits. There we got together with 2 ladies from Tyler's iVillage message board and their babies. They are getting so big! I wish Tyler could've been there, but the zoo isn't allowed even if he was out of the hospital because of all the people and bacteria from the animals. We had a lot of fun, saw the animals and the Sparky the Seal show. Then we went on some rides and played in their play area.
Sunday we visited Tyler and then went to the State Fair with Dawson. He loved it! He went on rides, ate some new foods and enjoyed seeing everything. His favorite thing was the cars, we had a hard time getting him away from them. We also watched some horse shows. First a 6 horse hitch, then a short Morgan competition, then the Tommy Turvy show. He rides his horses with no saddle or bridle. It was very interesting to see. At the end Dawson went on rides, we watched the fireworks, then went home.
Here's Tyler with Dan. He was very happy to see his daddy too.

Dawson on rides at the Zoo

Me and Dawson in a Challenger at the State Fair.

The 6 horse hitch competition. It was fun to watch!

Tyler was happy to get some play time in with us over the weekend.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Visited Tyler

Dawson and I visited Tyler today. Dawson did really good actually. He watched Blue's Clues on his portable DVD player on the way down there and didn't fuss until we were close to the hospital. They didn't have enough people in the playroom to watch him, so I brought him up with me. He was surprisingly patient while I labeled all the milk (57 bottles!) and then we went and saw Tyler. He did pretty good. He kept trying to see outside, the window is pretty high. We didn't stay in there long, just long enough to nurse Tyler. We got something to eat after that and then checked Dawson into the sibling playroom where they watched him for 90 minutes. He did great! Cried a bit they said but he lasted the entire 90 minutes, a record for him! He has a lot of seperation anxiety from being bounced around so much during the week, so it's been tough.

Tyler is looking good! He's 6 months now and weighs 18lbs, 4oz. He can sit by supporting himself with his arms, can stand with support for several minutes, can hold his head up well. All these things he used to be able to do before the hospital, but had to relearn because his muscles got weak. The nurse says he can roll, but I haven't seen it yet. He was starting to before, but his stomach got swollen and sore so he had no interest in it.

Here's a few pics of Tyler showing off what he can do

One arm! He's getting stronger! :)

Dawson saw me with the camera and decided he wanted a pic.
Trying to look out the window.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

A Busy Day with Dawson

Today was the Moms Like Me get together at Lake George. It's a website for local moms. My Mom's Club had a booth there and my ECFE group was gonna be there too. So we went, played at the park, got a coupon for a free Frosty at Wendy's, had a couple cookies and some juice. Dawson learned that he isn't supposed to squeeze those juice packets that come with a straw, he got wet.

Dawson loved all the playground stuff but he kept checking constantly to make sure I was still there. He's having some major seperation issues even on weekends when I'm home. Even around home he follows me everywhere and panicks if he loses track of me. It was hard being there and seeing all the double strollers with babies and toddlers. There seems to be tons of cute babies everywhere we go. Makes me miss having my family all in one place. After the park we went to Wendy's to eat and get our free Frosty. Of course he wouldn't touch his nuggets until we ate the ice cream. In hindsight, probably should've made a 2nd trip back up for ice cream once our food was gone!

We also got some shopping done today. He did great in the cart, but decided to make himself known in Cub. He was shrieking at the top of his lungs, to the point of coughing and hacking after everytime he'd do it because his throat would hurt. Then he'd do it again! Of course nothing short of pushing the cow button in the dairy aisle would make him quiet, so people were giving us looks and the moms were giving sympathetic smiles. No doubt they've been there before too!

Once we got home Dawson was taking his time getting out of the car, then was trying to get away from me. He bumped into the car next to us, who has a goofy alarm system in it. So of course it went off when Dawson bumped it. It's very loud and goes through several different noises. Dawson immediately took cover by squatting next to the car with a bewildered "help me!" look on his face!

We finally get in and he was watching me put groceries away. I have something like 50 bottles of breastmilk in the fridge freezer, plus all our other stuff. So I'm trying to rearrange and ended up with an avalanche. Dawson thinks falling objects are one of the funniest things ever. Just one item is great, but this was too much for the poor little guy! He was laughing so hard he fell over and was barely breathing! I was expecting to see a purple face any second. I went over there and helped him to his feet and he calmed down....until a lone can of juice made its way to the edge and fell too, then he lost it again!! So we were both about laughing so hard we had tears.
When I ask him to pick something up for me, he will but he'll purposely drop it just short of my fingers so it falls. He thinks that's pretty funny too. Takes a lot not to laugh at him somedays!

I'm bringing Dawson to the hospital with me tomorrow. Should be interesting. I'm out of storage bottles and Tyler is out of milk. Plus it'll be nice to spend some time with Tyler. :)

Dawson waiting for me to make popcorn

Dawson watching the air popper, he always claims all the popcorn that misses the bowl and flies onto the floor!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Learning New Things

We're feeling a little better, but still not sure if I'll be heading back tomorrow. Will have to see how I feel in the morning. I have someone to watch him on Wednesday until Thursday morning, so if I'm going, I still need to find someone for Thursday and I'll probably have to head back Thursday afternoon. Dan and I are spending the day together on Friday, we're going to the State Fair and staying in the cities overnight. Saturday we're going to the Como Zoo with Dawson to meet some friends from Tyler's message board.

It's hard not seeing Dawson much. For the last 2 months I've just seen him on weekends. In the last month, I've noticed him doing some new things. The day before the county fair I taught him how to drink from a straw. It came in handy at the fair, he had some lemonade. For the longest time he thought they were for chewing on and throwing at people!
Today he was eating from a spoon, but only managed to get about 2 Spaghetti O's on his spoon at a time. He can also use a fork, but quickly gets inpatient with how slow going it is and just uses his fingers. He also expects his meals to be in front of him very soon after he sits at the table. Which is right after I walk into the kitchen to make the food! The other day he discovered what "hot" means, when he touched the hot toaster oven door. I don't think he'll be doing that again!

Dawson also recently learned how to open doors, so we now have those door knob covers on the doors. He's not so happy about that. He can do zippers too, so he gets into his diaper bag and finds the animal crackers that I have in there for shopping trips. He's also getting more "helpful". For example, I was doing dishes and he saw a (dirty) plastic spoon on the counter, so he put it away for me. He can open the kitchen cabinet doors, mostly the one with the garbage, despite it having a baby lock on it. He can also open the baby gate that goes into the kitchen. He makes sure it's always closed behind him though, isn't he helpful?! Luckily Dan showed me how to tighten the lock a bit, so it takes more pressure to open and now he can't anymore....for now!

I was trying to get him to say a couple things today. I was asking him to say "more" when wanting more of something (usually something I'm eating). Right now he makes a whining noise for more. I said the word several times, and finally said "Do you want more?" and he said "uh huh". Figures! I was also trying to get him to understand that he peed his diaper. He would go all day with a wet diaper and not complain about it! So I told him he had pee in there and he said "bee". Then for the next 20 minutes or so he was saying "bee bee bee". Everything I pointed to was "bee". I think he just found a cool new sound to make, he doesn't seem to be putting much in context!

Yesterday we went outside. Dawson likes the slide and the swing. He loves slides, and will usually head right to the tallest one on a playground. The only ones he's not so sure about are the tube slides the curve around. The baby swing was bugging his leg so I put him on a big swing that was pretty low to the ground. He stayed on for about 3 slow swings and fell backwards. Poor little guy! It didn't seem to bother him much though, since it was so low to begin with. It's amazing how tough toddlers are, he can run into a wall and keep on running with barely a flinch!
I'm so bummed, I just sold my cloth diapers. Can't be using them with the chemo, it'll just eat away at them. Dawson gets diaper rash when they are used on him, so I just decided to sell them. I had 19 Bum Genius diapers, I sold 14 today. They were working so good with Tyler before too. I really liked them, at least we got a couple months out of them and I'm getting my money back from selling them too.

A couple pics from his 2 year old photoshoot....
Mommy and Dawson

In this pic you can see Dawson's little ponytail. My mom (with permission) cut it off while he was there. It was tickling the back of his neck and since it's so hot this summer, I thought I'd do him a favor. Was hoping for a full haircut, but she wasn't sure if he'd hold still for it all!

Monday, August 24, 2009

A Change in Schedule

Last night Dawson woke up around 3am coughing and hacking. I brought him some water but he wasn't interested in that. Instead he decided to be up for an hour or so. He did sleep in, thankfully, but still had a runny nose. I wasn't feeling the best either, I had the sniffles and a bad headache. We haven't had to deal with being sick while Tyler is in the hospital before. We're a pretty healthy family usually, but with being in different homes all week, it's a lot easier to pick something up. Of course then I feel bad about spreading it too!

So I decided not to go see Tyler, it's just not worth getting him sick. Dawson and I did have a fun day, we played outside a lot and he's been drinking lots of fluids. He loves juice, he'd drink the stuff all day if we'd let him! He downed an entire sippy of it last night. Of course I paid for that when he woke up the next morning and his jammies and sheets were soaked! I even had an overnight diaper on him which is supposed to absorb more, I've never had one leak before.

I walked another mile today. I did yesterday also. I'm not nearly as winded afterward as I used to be at that pace. I'm planning on walking a 5k in September. It's in Coon Rapids, for the Missing Grace foundation. They help with awareness and resources for miscarriage and infant loss. Another friend mentioned it the other day, this will be her 2nd year walking it. I'll be pushing Dawson in the stroller, and Tyler too if he's out. The double will get heavy, but at least I'll probably have Dan there too. I've known a lot of people who've had miscarriages just in the last year and 2 people who've had stillbirths. It's so sad, especially after having infertility problems on top of that. Hopefully we can make it. It's Saturday, Sept 12th if anyone is interested.

Our life has been turned upside down!

It's been just over 2 months since my last post! On June 22nd our life got turned upside down. Tyler was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia on June 22nd at his 4 month appointment and we were sent straight to Children's hospital. All his updates are on his CaringBridge site I'm unable to access this blog from the hospital so I have to find time while I'm home to update. I really want to keep up with the rest of the family as well, without clogging up Tyler's site with other family stuff. So here's a quick rundown of the last 2 months...

Tyler's 4 month appointment was June 22nd. He weighed 16 pounds, 15 ounces (89th percentile) and was 25 inches long (68th percentile). He got some shots too, but from now on will only get certain vaccinations. He's not allowed to get any live ones because of his immune system.

Dawson's 2 year appointment was August 3rd. He weighed 28 pounds, 8 ounces (54th percentile) and was 33 inches tall (13th percentile). He got 1 shot that he had to make up from them being out of stock earlier. He still only says a few words, but the Dr wants to wait another 6 months or so before getting him help. Especially since we're never home to have someone come to our home anyway. Since then he's been talking a little more. Just in the last couple weeks I've heard him say "Hi" and "peek" (peek a boo), which are both new. He did say "hi" a while back but I hadn't heard it since. He's been babbling more and playing with new sounds more too, so I'm sure the words are coming.

We had Dawson's birthday party at Jen Foede's house since she had been watching Dawson and offered to host it so we didn't have to worry about hosting a party right after coming home for the weekend. It was fun. Her husband Mark made an awesome cake, it was a racetrack. He loved opening presents and had fun jumping into all the wrapping and tissue paper once there was a nice pile there!
I'm at the hospital during the week and go home on Friday to be with Dan and Dawson. We go to parks, do our shopping and try to spend as much time together as possible before we all go our seperate ways again on Monday. Dawson has been staying with other people. That's been the most challenging thing lately, is finding a place for Dawson to be during the week. Hopefully we can be outpatient soon so we can be somewhat of a normal family again!!

Dawson's cake

He just couldn't wait to get a piece of it!

He had fun opening presents

After his party we played at the park. I thought this was a cool picture. Dawson's 2 year picture. I took them myself at Riverside Park in St. Cloud. It took over 50 pics, but I got several good ones. :)

This is Tyler his first week at the hospital. His stomach was bloated, his liver and spleen were 4 times their usual size, he was uncomfortable and almost inconsolible.

Now he's in a great mood, in his 2nd round of Chemo and doing great!

His latest achievement..sitting! He started this right at 5 months.