Normalcy

January 29, 2009

Ahhhhh……it feels good to be back. We are totally and completely better and feeling like ourselves again. And, the best part is that Mr. Super Immune System never got this nasty bug.

I spent all of Tuesday and Wednesday cleaning and sanitizing EVERYTHING. After a week of laying on my butt, it felt so good to clean, organize, and put everything back in it’s proper place. It was a war zone for a while there! (And I’ve been working on some fun projects you can see/read about at Recovering Forest-to be posted soon).

Gav went back to school today with a smile on his face and tummy full of a yummy breakfast (he’s not much of a morning person or a breakfast eater; read: he’s usually REALLY crabby in the mornings). Not one single whine or crab came out of his little mouth this morning so we knew we were off to a good start.

Today is the first day in 11 days that we have done our normal routine. Boy does it feel good!

We have yet to get back to our super-strict diet. I’m not too excited to start up again, and I’m sure the boys aren’t either. Right now we’re eating GF/CF and that’s fine by me. I feel like we still need to put some pounds back on their bony little bodies before we limit them so drastically again. Not missin’ SCD one bit.

And in fashion related news, Gavin has taken up wearing scarves. Again, he is cooler than I am. What a fashion forward four year old! 😉

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Day 8

January 26, 2009

I hate to keep going on and on about this, but we are STILL sick around here.  This is officially day 8 for Gavin.  If it is Rotavirus, then WebMD says it can last up to 10 days.  If we go by when Liam started getting sick, then we’ll be dealing with this until Saturday (that’s also not factoring in if Josh comes down with it).  I’m praying hard that he stays healthy.  He’s been our cleaning, laundering rock while we’ve been sick.  And I”m praying that it really doesn’t take Liam 10 days because I don’t think I can do another week of this!

I, on the other hand, am finally feeling ALMOST back to normal.  My sweet sis and hubby brought me my fav sandwich yesterday and that was the first “normal” food I’d eaten since last Monday.  It was delish!  I also managed some time out of the house today to stock up on groceries and “Target stuff”.  Poor Josh, I have no idea what he’s been eating all week.  I hit Target first because that’s more fun and by the time I got to the store I felt I could drop at any moment.  It took me twice as long and I could barely push my cart to the check-out.  Guess I’m not quite back up to speed! 

Even though it’s been mostly hell these past 8 days, we’ve had some good moments:

  • Liam pretends to fly airplanes around his head while sound asleep.  He was in our bed one night flying like crazy.  It was hilarious!
  • The boys and I have had TONS of cuddle time and I woudn’t trade that part for anything. 
  • My house is a total disaster and I don’t care one bit.
  • I didn’t wear make-up or fix my hair at all for an entire week.  It actually was nice. 
  • We wore jammies all week-there’s nothing better!
  • We cheated on the SC diet and we loved it.  Not that we were eating much, but it was nice to have some choices to offer the boys. I think they ate a whole box of crackers (oops).
  • We learned that Josh hasn’t done laudry in A LONG TIME
  • We realized that we are totally ready for Baby #3 because only once did we think (very briefly) about taking Liam to the doctor.  And we didn’t.

Hopefully each day will keep getting better and brighter. I miss routine and I’m starting to miss order and cleanliness (of the house, not myself-I’ve been showering!)

Sick and Cheating

January 23, 2009

We are STILL sick around here.  Both boys threw up simultaneously this morning right after they got up.  A friend reminded me today that’s exactly why we have hardwood floors and leather furniture.  Exactly.  I just cannot believe we are still pukey.  Gavin hasn’t thrown up (until today) since Sunday night.  I was sure he was feeling better. 

Because of our week-long flu I caved today and sent Josh to the store for chicken noodle soup (IN A CAN) and Pedialyte.  Two things full of ingredients that both boys are not supposed to have.  You know what?  I DON’T CARE.  They cannot keep food down and I”m always are hearing the stories about kids having to be hospitalized due to dehydration. Because I can do nothing but lay around and imagine the worse, I decided it was time we got some food into them.  Yes, I could have stewed a chicken for several hours for broth and then chopped up vegetables and made a yummy soup, but I can hardly lift my arms I still feel so weak.  Sorry to all those die-hard SCDers out there, I know we totally cheated on our diet, but the boys had soup about 5 hours ago and so far it has stayed down and they seem much perkier.  I may regret my decision later, but for right now, I’m just glad they have something in their little tummies. 

Maybe tomorrow we’ll finally start feeling better.  Oh, and it seems that we picked up this lovely little virus from a family at chuch on Sunday whose youngest had ROTAVIRUS.  Yes, the baby was at home, but the rest of the siblings came and apparently infected me and the boys while I worked in the nursery.    I would just like to say a heart-felt thanks for this.  It’s been a blast!

Sick as sick could be

January 21, 2009

We are utterly and completely sick around here. Well, super hero Josh is not sick (not yet anyway). We seem to like to do EVERYTHING as a family, including puking our guts out. It all started with a notorious meltdown from Gavin on Sunday after church. UH-OH. Meltdowns of that caliber usually only mean one thing…..he’s getting sick. And yep, Sunday night he woke up in the middle of the night covered in you-know-what. He seemed better on Monday and by Tuesday was back to his usual self, and then I had Cheerios for breakfast. Let’s just say that’s all I had to eat on Tuesday, yet I was sick every hour until about 8AM this morning (at one point I was even throwing up ice chips).

Liam now has it and is miserable. I knew we were in for more trouble when he crawled up on the couch with me this morning at 10 and fell asleep. This kid usually doesn’t stop moving.

Huge props to Josh for coming home early yesterday, cleaning up my messes (yes he did!) and for bathing and changing Liam every few hours as needed. He’s gone through 4 outfits today. Poor guy.

And I must profusely apologize to my wonderful mum who so lovingly came over yesterday morning to wrangle the boys and pick up my house while I lay at death’s door. A little bird told me she hosted a lovely dinner party last night in which she became sick right before dinner. Oh I am so sorry. This nasty little bug spreads like crazy. Watch out, if your family hasn’t had it yet, I’m sure it’s coming. We are down for the count.

On a more positive note, before I got sick, I had been doing some amazing research and we possibly will be entering into a whole new level of autism training. I’m very excited to share things I’ve been learning, but that is for another time and when I can hold my head up for more than a few minutes at a time.

Bits and Pieces

January 14, 2009

(I never know what to title my more random posts that don’t have one main theme).

First, let’s talk about this……..

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Gav’s first school picture. And it’s good. And he’s actually smiling AND looking at the camera at the same time (this is no easy feat for any photographer). I actually had a really cute chocolate brown sweater on him that day, especially for pictures, but apparently someone thought he was hot or something because it does not appear in the picture. Anyone who knows me would know I would not have put a football t-shirt on him for picture day.

Speech therapy at ChildServe started today and it was FUN! I pictured Gav sitting at a table with picture cards for 45 minutes, but that was so not how it went. Gav played with a GIANT exercise ball, buried himself in a ball-pit, found hidden objects in play-dough and other fun stuff all while working on his verbal skills. It’s going to be great going every week. He’s very tired tonight after a busy day of school and therapy, so hopefully he’ll sleep good!

Josh and I have actually carved out enough time tonight to finish writing our official appeal letter to our insurance company. I’m told this will not be the only letter we will have to write. We are ready for this fight (well, Josh more than me-he’s the negotiator of the family).

What else, what else, oh, we received a $100 check back from Roto-Rooter this week. Not what I hoped, but it’s better than nothing.

And this last little interesting thing…. Gav suffers from HPV (human papilloma virus) which causes warts. He has this little one on this chin that has been there for a few years, and he recently got one on the end of his nose. UGH. This little guy has gotten bigger and I’ve been to our Ped twice, but he refuses to burn it off. He’s afraid it will be too much for Gavin and he’s probably right. I began searching online for safe, pain-free options and discovered this site. BANANA PEELS, people! Apparently the potassium in the peel heals warts. Whether or not they stay gone has yet to be determined, but there are like 68 testimonials posted right now of how people got rid of their warts by putting banana peels on them. This is really weird and almost too hippie for me, but I didn’t want to spend a ton of money on things that may not work or be too painful. This is almost free (we always have bananas around here) and definitely painless. Most people mentioned how they taped a piece of peel to their wart, left if overnight, and saw results within a few days. Well, since this is on the end of Gav’s nose, I’m pretty sure he wouldn’t let me tape anything to his face for an extended period of time. But, anytime anyone eats a banana, I cut a small piece off and rub it on his spots. Honestly, I think I see a difference. I may just be kidding myself, but my sister and mom noticed a difference too. Seriously, this sounds crazy, and maybe it really won’t work, but hey, it doesn’t hurt to try!

New Medicaid

January 7, 2009

First off, my almond flour muffins turned out beautifully the other day! The boys devoured them and I even thought they tasted good (which is saying a lot). They each had another this morning and now I’m watching them closely to see if there is any kind of negative reaction. So far so good! Finally, “normal” food!

The actual point of this post is to discuss a new form of Medicaid that Gavin is eligible for. But let me back up first. About a month ago, I applied for the Ill and Handicapped Waiver through the Medicaid program in our state. On New Year’s Eve, I received a call from our case worker letting us know that our app had been accepted, Gavin had been declared eligible for that particular waiver, AND there was no money left in the fund. Awesome.

“But,” she said, “there is a new waiver beginning January 1st, and if you get your paperwork done right away, you’ll be first in line for aid.” Woo hoo! Let’s hope that’s really true because we need all the help we can get. We received our packet two days later and it’s already back in the mail.  I’ll keep you updated as we learn more. (The one thing I have found from working with government agencies in the past is that they are VERY slow at doing almost everything, so we’ll just have to wait and see).

Fun for Me!

January 4, 2009

I received a LOVELY stack of books for Christmas. My head is going to explode with all the autism knowledge when I’m done.  Watch out, Gavin!

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I’m especially excited to read the Son-Rise book. If you’ve read my blog for any length of time, I’ve referenced Raun Kauffman before. He’s an autistic adult whose parents recovered him fully and now he leads a healthy, normal life. Son-Rise is written by his father and is their story of how they recovered Raun.

AND, this is the newest addition to our appliance family as of yesterday.

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Isn’t she a beaut! I’m a little intimidated by such a gigantic food processor, but there are only 3 buttons so how hard could it be? We also purchased a Costco membership this week (FINALLY!) We are on our way to bulk nut flour and lots of muffins!

Also, I found out recently that special needs children can be tax deductible. Well, not exactly the kids themselves, but their therapies, medical expenses, and even special food. It’s too late in the game for me to write off all our gluten-free food from last year (I hate saving receipts) but I have an envelope ready for ’09. I do have all medical forms from this past year, so we should be able to deduct all Gav’s tests and visits to our DAN doc. Hopefully that should help some.

AND, this has nothing to do with anything, but do you remember my hot water woes since we moved in?  Well, after Roto-Rooter “attempted” (read:stole my money) Josh went down to the basement to try to figure it out.  An hour, one trip to the hardware store, and $30(!!!!!!!) later, he fixed it.  I now have the HOTTEST hot water and it gushes out of the faucet.   (I guess the Grinch does bring back all the Who’s presents and decorations in the end, doesn’t he?)  And in case you’re wondering, a call has been placed to Roto-Rooter to see if we can re-coup some of our losses.

Thank you

January 3, 2009

You know who you are. Time and again you have come to our rescue right when we needed it. You have a genuine giving spirit and Christ’s love shines through you. You are selfless and sincere, not asking for anything in return. We would not be where we are today without you. We love you and thank you. You do not know how much this means to us…..again.

Happy New Year

January 1, 2009

The party is over, the friends have gone, the dishes are done and the kiddos are snug in their beds.  Yes, it’s not even midnight yet, but that’s how we roll.  😉 

I just wanted to take time to reflect a bit on 2008 and look ahead to ’09.  This has been a good year…..mostly for Gavin.  He started school in January and has loved every minute of it.  His teachers are wonderful and we feel confident placing his early education in their hands.  We started our gluten-free/casein-free diet in April and he did exceptionally well with that.  He only missed his mac and cheese for a minute and hasn’t asked for it since.  Liam turned one and became Gavin’s best teacher.   Unknowingly, Liam has taught Gavin social skills and behaviors that he can’t learn in a classroom setting.  Siblings are so good for each other!

May brought a series of tests which were so beneficial in helping us know what Gavin’s body could and could not tolerate, as well as the nutrients and vitamins he was deficient in.  We began rigorous supplementation which has helped him immensely.

Summer brought lots of fun, especially at the lake.  He became more accustomed to water this year (with the help of Water Babies at the Y) and spent quite a bit of time in and around the lake. 

The school year stole the rest of summer out from under us, but Gav was more than willing to go back.  He switched to morning hours this fall (but kept the same teachers) so now he has a chance to “rest” when Liam does in the afternoons (it’s heavenly!)

In November we started our biggest challenge yet of the Specific Carb Diet.  Gavin has done amazingly well and has not once asked for an “illegal” food.  His little body is healing and we have noticed a difference from the beginning.  His speech is clearer, his sentences longer and more complete, his poop is solid (woo hoo) and he is so much more aware of his environment.  He has even started to boss his little brother around. 

This has been a good, but challenging year and as I move into 2009 I am so excited to see more changes in Gavin.  I know he’s only going to get better and I can’t wait to look back a year from now.