Monday, September 21, 2009

Adalynn Update & Lesson Learned: Don't run with a toothbrush in your mouth....well, at least don't fall!

Before you all come knocking down my door for an update on Adalynn, I figured that I'd better post something....so here is the story

play by play

doctor visit to doctor visit

ER visits #1, #2, and #3

and ending with a 3 day hospital stay.


Monday, September 14
 8 a.m.
The boys were sent to the bathroom to brush their teeth while I was getting socks and sweatshirts for them to go to school. Camden thought he would be helpful and gave Adalynn her toothbrush so she could brush her teeth as well. I straighten up their beds and then hear her scream. She was laying on the hallway floor holding her mouth and the toothbrush was next to her. Camden is saying "sorry, sorry, sorry" and blood is starting to drip down her chin. She fell with the toothbrush in her mouth while she was running away from Camden.

I get her cleaned up and she calms down. The neighbor takes Broderick to school and Camden, Adalynn, and I do some work in the yard. She was acting fine! I wasn't too worried.

9 a.m.
She starts screaming out of the blue. At first I thought she had been stung by a bee again, but then she started holding her neck and saying "owie mouth". I called the doctor, explained to them what had happened and they scheduled an appointment for 10:15.

10:15 a.m.
Doctor looks in her mouth and says he sees the bruised spot....nothing to worry about and to give her Tylenol and Motrin and she should be fine.

11:15 a.m.
She won't eat or drink anything for lunch. She really wants to and keeps taking drinks and tries to take some bites, but then either spits it out or lets it drip down her chin. We take Camden to the bus stop and then come home and she takes a nap

3:15 p.m.
I wake her up to go get the boys from the bus stop. She is super fussy, even despite being on meds. I notice that she drooled a lot while napping and by the time I got to the bus stop her shirt was soaked. She still won't eat or drink and now she is not even swallowing her own saliva. I called the doctor back and they said to take her to the ER.

4 p.m.
We head to the ER. They take some X-rays, look in her mouth (and don't see anything) and send us home with instructions to alternate Tylenol and Motrin every 3 hours.

Tuesday, September 15
It was a fairly uneventful day. She is on meds continuously and still eating very little. She did drink slightly better, but definitely NOT NORMAL!!! We can't let up on the meds or she is miserable and will not drink at all. If she is medicated, at least she is getting some fluids in her.

Wednesday, September 16
8 a.m. 
She is still super fussy. Still taking the meds around the clock-even waking up in the middle of the night in pain.She ate about 2 bites of pancake and drank about an ounce of juice for breakfast.

11:30 a.m.
She doesn't eat lunch at all. She was restless for nap and would barely let me lay her down. When she did wake up from nap, I noticed that she was now running a fever. I called our doctor's office back and they scheduled her an appointment for around 4. They called back a little bit later and said to just take her back to the ER and that more testing probably needed to be done.

3:30 p.m.
I give her more meds and wait for John to get home so I can take back to the ER. She now has a visibly swollen neck and you can feel a golf ball sized knot in her neck (around the spot where you would typically take your pulse). We get to the ER and they don't do anything besides take a urine sample. They look in her mouth and do not see anything. When I asked about a CT, they said it was too dangerous to do on someone her age and it would subject her to too much radiation. They sent us home with a script for Amoxicillan and said she had lymphadenopathy (or swollen lymph nodes).

Thursday, September 17
7:00 a.m.
Adalynn wakes up with a slight amount of dried blood on her lips. I honestly didn't think anything of it. She ate a little more than previously and as long as we stayed on top of the meds she acted okay.

9:00 a.m.
We go to my MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) meeting. She goes into her classroom and does great. Still acting slighly fussy, but I thought we were on the mend. Didn't think that she truly had swollen lymph nodes, but was hoping that the antibiotics would do the trick.

11:30 a.m.
Lunch at McDonalds. She ate about 3 bites of a cheeseburger and then played. I didn't take meds with me, so she didn't have her usual next dose. Seemed to be acting okay, so I came to the conclusion, that maybe the doctors were right. They are doctors! Speaking of doctors, her regular pediatrician calls and schedules an appointment for that afternoon.

12:30 p.m.
We drop Camden off at kindergarten and she falls asleep on the way home. I still don't give her more meds, since she was feeling well enough without them to go to sleep. She is restless and fights going back to sleep when I move her inside from the van, but eventually does fall asleep.

2:45 p.m.
Adalynn wakes from nap crying. I go into the room and am shocked to see blood pouring out of her mouth. It is all over her shirt, the couch, and running down her chin. I race her to the car and head to back to the ER for the third time.

7:30 p.m.
We are sent home again. They aren't sure where the bleeding is coming from, but suspect she just opened up her old wound. We leave without any additional testing and are told to follow up with our ENT on Friday with the idea of possibly doing a scope to see what is going on in her mouth.

Friday, September 18
8:30 a.m.
I call the ENT's office as soon as they opened, yet can't get an appointment until 2 in the afternoon. We take it easy at home. She is still obviously in pain and the swelling in her neck has not subsided (despite being on antibiotics).

2:00 p.m.
We meet with our ENT. I explain the whole above story. He looks in her mouth and like everyone else, still does not see anything. I tell him about her being diagnosed with the swollen lymph nodes, but how I am concerned that it might not be. He is surprised to hear that we were sent home after the bleeding incident without any additional testing. He then feels her neck. Immediately I see the expression on his face change. He says for me to go home, pack a bag, and go back to the ER. He wants Adalynn to be admitted this time and for a CT to be done.

2:30 p.m.
I guess the ENT noticed my hesitation about going back to the ER because he called me on my way home and told me to just go straight to the Ped's Floor-they were expecting me.

3:45 p.m.
We arrive at the hospital and as promised, they were waiting for me. Within minutes we were in our room and not long after that they were putting an IV in (well, attempting to put an IV in. Adalynn has very small veins and it was quite difficult). Three sticks, two nurses, and one doctor later she finally had her IV.

5:15 p.m.
We go for a CT. They attempted to do it with her awake and she was great until the bed moved. They ended up calling the doctor down and sedated her with Versed. I was able to stay with her the entire time and I even held her hand during the CT.
6:30 p.m.
We are back in our room where Daddy and Camden are waiting (Broderick went to Cub Scouts with a friend). Adalynn is still very out of it and had a slight allergic reaction (hives and red eyes) to either the Versed or the contrast dye that was given for the CT. She stays hooked up to her monitors and slowly wakes up. John stays with her and Camden and I go downstairs so I can eat some dinner.

8:00 p.m.
The boys leave to get Broderick and we finally get an answer. The swelling in Adalynn's neck is not a swollen lymph node, but a hematoma. A FREAKING hematoma.....yes, at this point I am MAD!!!! A hematoma!!! Go ahead and google "hematoma of the neck" and you will see why I am so mad. This is a potentially life threatening condition. A hematoma can cause swelling in the neck severe enough to compromise her airway. And we waiting 5 days before finding out that is what her swelling was. By now, the swelling had pretty much stopped, so we were fairly safe, but what if it wouldn't have stopped? We were scared to death, nonetheless. She was placed on IV antibiotics and monitored throughout the night. Poor thing had cords coming from her arm, her chest, and her foot. She kept saying "untangle me, mommy". It was a rough night and they did give her some pain meds, but her stats were fine.

Saturday, September 19
Adalynn wakes up with dried blood on her lips and a large spot on the bed. The nurse seemed slightly alarmed, and let the doctor know. They come in and still can't figure out where the bleeding is coming from.

We continue to be monitored, she is seen by the ENT on call, and continues to get her IV meds. Mid afternoon, she starts acting like she feels better and is much harder to contain in the hospital room. We make several laps around the floor pulling her IV pole with her.
She unhooks her IV twice throughout the day. The doctors decide that another few doses of IV antibiotics would be best and we stay another night (as long as her IV holds up). She doesn't like sleeping in "the doctor's bed", but doesn't fight it. I think she is enjoying the special attention, the presents given to her, her own laptop, and the HUGE Elmo balloon that one of the nurses gave her. She sleeps much better throughout the night and wakes up without any evidence of bleeding.

Sunday, September 20
HOME.....we made it home right before lunch. She was sent home with a script for more antibiotics (stronger and different than what she was originally on). She was so happy to see her doggie and really seems to continue to feel better. She does find the stethoscope and starts pretending to be the doctor telling Broderick to take a deep breath. She also chases the dog around with the flashlight telling him to "open wide". It was too cute! But we could also tell how much better she was feeling.We were shocked to find TONS of blood on her pillow and on her sheets when it was time for bed. Guess that was from Thursday morning, but we will never know.

TODAY......Monday, September 21
She is back! I can't believe how much better she is feeling today. I called the ENT and we go back to see him on Friday. The swelling has subsided, but you can still feel the knot (which I am assuming is the hematoma) in her neck.

We are praising God that she is happy and healthy. Hopefully this is where the story ends.

All of this from falling with a toothbrush in her mouth. I feel like I need to lock them up in the medicine cabinet.

Thank you for all of the prayers. We really appreciate it. Just knowing that there are people all over the country who care about a little girl they have never met is amazing! We are so truly blessed!

And don't you just love the AWESOME quality of the photos?   ....they were all from our cell phone.

Many Blessings,

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

2 years already....9-17-09

This is not going to be the post that I was hoping for to celebrate Adalynn's two year anniversary of her first surgery. Which might or might not have to do with the fact that two out of the last three nights were spent in the ER. To make a VERY long story short....Adalynn tripped with her toothbrush in her mouth (big brother thought he was helping by giving her the toothbrush) and she hurt her mouth pretty bad.....if it weren't already late and I didn't have to prepare to lead my first MOPS discussion group tomorrow, then I would give more details ... but for now. this is it!


ANYWAYS.....2 years ago Adalynn's first face, which we still miss, was changed forever. I think I will always miss that first wide smile, but feel blessed we live in a country where it is possible to have this type of birth defect repaired at such a young age. If you haven't watched Smile Pinki it is definitely worth trying to find it!!!!
Here is the trailer....

And here is our baby girl.....

2 years ago ... she looked like this....

but within a few hours, she looked like this!

And once again, I have to say

...  wow, time flies!

Many Blessings,

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Back to School

Well, the first day of school has officially come and gone and the only one who cried was Adalynn....not mommy or daddy, not Camden, and definitely not Broderick (who has been asking for quite some time if it was time to go back to school).

Just Adalynn!

And not just a little fussing....but great big alligator tears. She DID NOT want Camden to get on that bus and leave her behind. She was fine saying good-bye to Broderick when he got onto the bus that morning, but later that day when it was time to put Camden on the bus, she was a mess.

Even I was okay with my baby boy going to school for the first time. Maybe because I have already done it once. Now, I will admit that I was a little bit sad, but definitely not as sad as the lady who walked by me with tears running down her face and went back to her car sobbing and not as sad as Adalynn....but I was sad.

They both had a fantastic first day and love their new teachers. We are excited for a great school year and are looking forward to seeing what is in store this year!

Our first day of school was definitely not an ordinary day. We had to wake up super early to take John to campus since his car decided to quit on him...no warning, no flashing lights...nothing! It just died (as he was going about 55 mph on his way home). UGH!!! And so I wouldn't be stranded at home carless on the first day of school, we drove him to his office. (Though Camden asked several times once learning we had to be out of the house super early, why daddy couldn't just ride his bike)....

So we were all up and out of the house by 7ish to drop John off. We came home with a few minutes to spare before Broderick had to go to school. Quick hair and teeth brushing and we were ready for pictures outside. Broderick had gotten so big over the past few months; it has been a little frightening. When I look at these pictures I realize just how fast he is growing up....

and at the bus stop with our neighbor (and his "best friend") Wyatt.

Camden, Adalynn, and I walked back home. We played for a bit, cleaned a little, and ate some lunch. Then it was time for Camden to go to school. He was so excited!!! And Adalynn was too!!! She still didn't understand what was going on.

Waiting for a late bus on your first day of school is NOT easy....he was soooo excited and the bus was sooooo late (like 20 minutes late).

I couldn't even get him to slow down long enough for me to get a good picture of him getting onto the bus. But here he is waiting for the bus with our other neighbor and his "best friend" Reesie and another of him sitting with her roaring to go!

And it was then Adalynn realized Camden was leaving on the bus and the bus was leaving without her. She was so sad.

We walked the half-mile back to our house and Adalynn was very quiet. I thought she might be on the verge of going to sleep-since it was about her nap-time-but I think she was processing everything. The minute we stepped inside the door and she was alone she really let loose. Such a sad little girl!

 She took a great nap (amazing how good you sleep when there aren't two screaming brothers to wake you up). And before long it was time to get the boys off the bus. Broderick was first around 3:45 and then Camden got off about 4:25.

I got a better picture of him getting off of the bus, but you can tell how excited he still was.

Then some quick shots of the boys together (Camden was still in pajamas when Broderick left that morning). Here they are sporting their new school clothes, backpacks, and matching tennis shoes.

And then we were back off to Kutztown, to pick John up from campus. We ate a fantastic corndog dinner in the car since we then had to go straight to football practice. Needless to say, we were running ragged by that evening. I tried to get a picture of Camden wearing his "I Survived My First Day of Kindergarten" hat-but this was the best I could get. I think everyone felt like this!

We took John to campus that next day and then he drove himself on Thursday (since he would be home early). Thank goodness we heard from the shop and we were able to pick his car up on Thursday night and life has returned somewhat to normal.

For those of you who were wondering....the fuel pump went out in his car and dropping a gas tank and trying to repair it yourself pretty much sucks . We did it at home (yes, WE.... I was under the car and helped too!!!) Our neighbor came out and helped....I think his wife felt sorry for me laying on the ground and attempting to help. John ended up spending about 5 hours doing changing both the fuel pump and the fuel filter, got everything hooked back up and the stinkin' car still wouldn't start. So off to the shop it went. I guess one of the prongs on some cord of the pump was bent...so we did the bulk of the work and the shop bent a prong back. And they're the ones who get paid.

The weekend was busy as well. Friday and Saturday with both yucky with lots of rain and Camden's first soccer game was canceled. Broderick's Saturday game was moved to Sunday. So we went to Rodale Organic Farm and picked apples. Wish we would have gotten some pictures, but because of all the rain, we thought it best not to get the camera wet.

Sunday was beautiful, so we definitely took the camera to football and although we didn't get many good pictures of Broderick playing (HAVE to get a longer lens) I did get a few great ones of our sweet little girl in her Colt's jersey and a hair bow that I made almost 2 years ago. 

and about two years ago....when she first wore this bow....

wow.....time really does fly!!!! 
Many Blessings,

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Summer's End

Is it that time already??

Even with school just around the corner, the much cooler weather, and signs of fall all around us, I still hate to admit that summer is over. The kids go back to school on Tuesday, John started last week, and my classes started 2 weeks ago...but we are still not ready for summer to end.

Obviously we have had an eventful summer...some good, some not so good, and some really bad things have happened. Throughout all of these things though, the kids kept growing and changing. Here are some highlights that I may have forgotten over the past month or so....

Adalynn has been changed to a "monitoring" status through the Early Intervention Speech Program. As exciting as this sounds and as little speech services she actually received (once a quarter or every 3 months), I am very nervous about this.

She is definitely talking. Her favorite things to say are "oh yeah, baby" and "no mommy, I do'd it" and there is "I dunno" and you can't forget my favorite..."shake your booty". She has some nasality, but nothing too alarming and some of her pressure sounds (especially /t/) still sound a little off. But all in all, she is doing fantastic and it was decided that she no longer needed services. They will call me every month or so and check up on her and see if I have any new concerns.

Oh, and another exciting occurrence over the past few months is that WE HAVE HAIR!!!! Adalynn is slowly, but surely growing hair. It is still really curly and because it is thin, it doesn't look that long---but when you pull it up, the length is definitely there (especially on the crown). Break out the hair bows, barrettes, and pony-tails!!!

She is also well on her way to being potty trained. She has worn panties the past several days and only had a handful of accidents. Today she stayed dry until about 15 minutes before bed time. She did have two 'dirty' accidents, but did not tinkle in her panties until about 7:30 p.m. We even played outside for awhile (and she got stung) and she still did great! YAY ADALYNN!!!!

Some other big news in our house is that Broderick had his first "official" football game. We had a few scrimmages (the pictures are from those), but his first real game of the season was on Saturday afternoon. He was so excited and his 1st grade teacher came. Even more exciting was that his team tied with the other team, so he counts that as winning (they don't play overtime). He is getting better every practice and he is even playing with the possiblity of tackle football next fall. For those of you who were wondering, he is playing the line-that's what being the tallest kid gets you- left guard and right tackle. He loves it!

And the biggest news of all.....one baby boy is going to kindergarten and the other into second grade. We had a tour of the kindergarten center, met both of their teachers, and the boys are more than ready to go. Their clothes are already laid out and the new shoes have been calling their names for awhile. I can't believe these adorable little boys have turned into such a big kids! Watch out kindergarten----here comes Camden!!!!And second grade----are you ready for Broderick?

Many Blessings,