Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Frazzled- A journal by Ellie's mom

Ok...I know, the title is a little over the top...but that is how I feel today. I think I just need to vent a little, so bear with me.

I feel a bit selfish writing this because I should feel nothing but joy and relief. I have 2 healthy kids who I love more than anything, but I feel exhaustion and defeat today. Reid's lip looks absolutely awesome. We are in awe of his new look, and he is smiling more everyday which is every parent's love. I am so amazed at this little guy for all he has been through. I am sure I would be a total grump if I had to go through half his journey. I have to remind myself of this.

Reid is really having a tough time with his nights. He never has been a great sleeper. He always has gotten me up at night to feed...and I was ok with this..because he would go back down nicely after eating in the night. Well, for the past week since his lip repair...we have had really hard nights. I think last night was the worst, and that is why I am feeling so frazzled today.

I hate the stage of childhood when kids can not tell you what is wrong. For right now, I am guessing. Is it his lip? Does he hurt? Is he gassy and crampy? Is he too hot or cold? Are his nasal stints bugging him? Does he need pain medication? What can I do to comfort him? And on and on it goes. He has been sleeping in his car seat since his surgery due to having to sleep on his back. He is NOT a back sleeper, but can rest fairly comfortably in his car seat. He slept in it exclusively for the first 4 months or so due to his reflux. The arm restraints were no fun, I know that. He was unable to soothe himself by grabbing his blanket. I know this was tough for him.

So, yesterday we got the ok that he can sleep on his belly amd take the restraints off. I thought he would be so happy and sleep well. Nope. Not even close. He was up hourly or every hour and a half and would sometimes be up for 40-60 minutes crying. I kept him on pain meds...but still the crying. I really think his belly hurt him. I am just guessing. He didn't want to eat and would push anything away that I brought near to him. He wanted nothing to do with his bottle. Again, could be the pain from his lip, too. So, I finally got him settled after 3:30 am....when a wailing cry came from his room at 5 am. I went up to see what it was this time (I had been up with him at least 7-8 times at this point) and I found his nasal stint half in his nose and half out. Great. So, I had to wake Brian...yes, you heard me. He has the gift of sleeping through all this, but I needed his help to get the stint back it. To make a long story short...it took 30 minutes, 4 hands, a thrashing baby, and screaming that you can not imagine from Reid to get everything back in its place. I got him back down by 6, and then Brian was up for the day. I crawled back in bed....for a bit....and then was awakened for the day at 7:15 by Ellie. How she slept through all of the screaming, I will never know. It was horrible. So, if I could estimate how much sleep I have gotten in the past 5 nights...it is probably just over 10 hours total. For real. I am a mess.

So, why the journal? Poor me, time? No. Just time to vent and time to get any advice from all of you who have done it. I don't know how I am going to make it through with the stints. Cleaning them and putting them back in is a nightmare. I am thinking we will have to do it when he is asleep. He will most likely wake up, but we may get some done while he rests. It is too hard to get them all settled and taped down with steri strips and Mastisol with a baby who is too strong for his own good. Reid had a hold of my hands while we were stabalizing his head to get the stint it, and he wrapped his legs around Brian's arms and was pushing so hard. He is so strong and terribly obstinate. I am glad. He would have to be to put up with all of this. But, these are going to be a very long 3 months. Very.

I did feed Reid some solids today. Rice cereal with apples and cinnamon. He ate about 1/3 of the jar. Then, didn't want anything to do with it. He hasn't eaten real well today with his formula either. Just not right.

So, again....I just needed to vent that all out. I love my kids dearly, but I am a bit worse for worn today. I feel that I am in a fog and can't get out. Reid just wants held. He doesn't want me to put him down. It is exhausting running on fumes and carrying around a 20 pound little guy everywhere. I pray this subsides and he can rest soon. We all need the rest.

Well, my time is done. Both kids are resting now. For how long, I never know....but I need to put my head down as well. Thanks for reading and if anything comes to mind...or if you had similar issues, that always is helpful to me. It's nice to not feel alone in this journey. I haven't very often....but today, I have just hit bottom.

I am lucky, and blessed beyond belief. I know this. I just needed to get some thoughts out. Thanks for being my sounding board.

Until next time.....


Allison said...

Oh, Janeen,

I wish I could just come over there, give you a big hug, and tell you to go take a nap! I know how you are feeling, not with the nasal stints, but just in general. This entire process takes so much out of you. It is physically and emotionally draining. I think anyone who has gone through anything similar with their child has felt this way. You have every right to be feeling the way you do. Just trust that things will get better, they really will. You will figure out what works best for you and Reid, and he will be resilient, just like he has proven time and time again. You have such a strong little guy, he is absolutely AMAZING. He gets that from having such strong and amazing parents, you really are to have come this far!

Now for the suggestions and tips. Is there any way someone could come over to watch the kids so you can get some much needed rest? I think it would be extremely beneficial for everybody. Also, have you tried wrapping Reid in a big blanket or a sheet when you need to put in his nasal stints? This way his arms and legs are not pushing and kicking, and it should go much faster!

I hope these words and suggestions are helpful. I'm glad you enjoyed the video of Abby watching Reid, I thought that would put a smile on your face!

Hang in there Mama, you've come so far!


The Lucey's Triplets said...


You have done such an amazing job and are such a strong person! I would be happy to come down and get Ellie so you could nap when Reid naps during the day and I am very serious about this! Ava and Ellie would love to play together. Please let me know if I can help! I have been through the sleepless nights and sometimes the bottom line is you just need some sleep. Hang in there!


steph said...

Sure wish there was something I could do to help you out. I don't really have any suggestions, but I will pray that things improve for all of you and that you figure out what works best. Hang in there.

Rachel said...


I am so willing to come over and hang out with the kiddos so that you can get a nap...you need that and you deserve that! I'm gonna call you and arrange something.

Hugs and Love,

John, Shannon, Broderick, Camden, and Adalynn said...

hugs hugs hugs ((((((HUGS))))))

Adalynn slept like crap after each of her surgeries. Just when she would start sleeping normally again (NOT through the night EVER-but more normal). Then it would be time for another surgery. She still wakes up, wants to be smack in the middle of us---forget the crib---but is doing better.

Both of my older kids didn't sleep well until 3ish. They nursed until they were 18 months old and then we would start them in their bed and they would just end up in ours by the middle of the night. This meant lots of getting up trying to get them back into their own bed and eventually saying FORGET IT!!!! Everyone sleeps better if they are in our bed. Now at almost 4 and 6, they both sleep in their own beds all night long.

Just always remember, THIS TOO SHALL PASS.

Best of luck!

Hello, and welcome to my page! I am so glad you are here. I am going to try and show you the average life of a 5 year old from my perspective. Mommy and Daddy will help me along the way if I get stuck.

Let me first introduce my family to you. I am Ellie. I am a 6 year old. I live in Ohio with my Mommy, Daddy, little brother Reid, and dog, Sophie. My mommy is a teacher. She teaches nine and ten year olds and loves it. She has been teaching for twelve years. My daddy works with computers. He works hard everyday.

We all love spending time together. I have wonderful grandparents and a terrific extended family. I am a very lucky girl. Thank you for visiting my page. Write to me any time. I love getting mail!!!

Many blessing to you all.

Little Ski (Ellie)

Mommy and me having cuddle time at Hocking Hills.

Told ya, my hair can be wild! And you thought I was kidding!

Hmmm, Blue's Brother's perhaps?