Saturday, June 30, 2012

The "Tails" of House Hunting

Well, we braved the world of house hunting with a baby. It was something I was not looking forward to. I kept imagining little Jackson crying and crying because he didn't have a crib to sleep in.

I am glad to report that he was quite a trooper!

He got a little antsy on the drive, but not too bad. The weather was 106 degrees in Athens. It was a hot day in the neighborhood.

The first apartment we went to, we met the property manager of a rental company there. Let's call her Susan. Susan was a nice middle-aged lady, with a slight southern accent and a faint stench of cigarette smoke. She walked us up to the apartment and opened the door. She immediately closed it just as dogs started barking. Multiple dogs. She looked at us nerviously and felt compelled to explain.

"We kept calling the tenants to tell them we were coming at 12:30. They didn't answer though. We can still look around, but they have two doberman pinschers."

"We were told they are really nice. Are you okay with that?"

They didn't sound too nice.

Ryan and I kind of looked at each other and figured we would rather brave dogs than the blistering Georgia heat.

When we walked in, the 2 dogs barked and barked at us. Susan hesitantly told us, "You can go ahead and go on up the stairs and take a look around. I'll get these dogs situated." She hastily added on to the end, "But if I holler, come save me."

The apartment itself was nice, but to put it nicely, let's just say it was a pig sty! There was beer cans everywhere, urine in the toilet, random baby clothes everywhere, but no crib/highchair/anything else that a baby would need, and trash tossed every which way. I felt like I was trespassing.

We went back downstairs and the dogs decided that they liked us and started licking Jackson's feet. Susan wanted to show us the back deck of the apartment, but when she opened the door, the dogs bolted out. We quickly tried to catch them.

Imagine Ryan, the baby, and I trying to round up 2 random giant black dogs that we didn't know in 106 degree heat, while Susan yelled from the inside of the house. "Doggie! Doggie! It's too hot for you to stay out there! You'll melt!" As you can probably tell, Susan helped a lot.

When we left, Susan said, "You call me now if you are interested!"

No thanks, Susan. It was a fun adventure, but maybe a little too fun for us.

And then I found little black bugs crawling on me as we were leaving.


(On a side note: I am happy to report, we did find a great place! Hip hip hooray!)

Saturday, June 9, 2012

7 Months

Jackson is 7 months old! I feel like I was just writing his 6 month post. Where did the time go? Jackson is such a sweet little boy.  He had a rough month this month—he had surgery and a pesky cold that won’t go away. He constantly has a runny nose. He’s learned that if he takes his fist a wipes it, it’ll go away! (Well, away as in all over his face!) Or he will bury his head in Ryan or my clothes and rub it on us. See! He is already learning how to share! 

I don’t think I ever posted Jackson’s 6 month statistics:

Height: 29 inches (99th percentile)
Weight: 21 lbs (89th percentile)
Head Circumference: Don't remember the measurement (90th percentile)
Jackson has super long legs! 

Interesting facts about 7 month old Jackson:

--Started doing this thing where he opens his mouth and shakes his head back and forth. Then he laughs. It’s pretty funny.

--Has tried peas, blueberries, and sweet potatoes baby food and apple/prune juice. I think this baby will eat anything we give him. One time, Ryan mixed peas and prune juice because of constipation, and Jackson ate it! Yuck! 

--Loves his stuffed animals. He thinks they are real animals and laughs when we move them around for him.

--We read him a touch-and-feel book every night before he goes to bed. He now thinks every book is a touch-and-feel book—including my kindle.
--Jackson gets up on his hands and knees and rocks back and forth. It looks like he is trying to jump start his crawl.

--Has crazy hair with lots of cowlicks.

--He is one cute kid!!

Friday, June 8, 2012

A Boy and His Ball

Jackson loves balls. Unfortunetly, we didn't own a single ball for the poor kid. Sometimes I would give him oranges to play with. and he would play and play with them until they got rotten or eaten.

Well, today I took Jackson to the store. He was content playing in his stroller. I decided to stroll around a bit, looking around. We got to the toy section and I saw a soft toy football. I picked it up and all the sudden I hear Jackson say, "Ahh ba ba! Da da da na na!" I look down and he is reaching for the ball with big eyes.

I let him hold it, and he was happy as could be. Best $2.50 I ever spent.

Future football player? Maybe! He should probably start wearing a helmet if he's going to play with his Daddy though.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Surgery, from Beginning to End

It's true, our poor little Jackson had to have surgery to fix his urinary tract. It was something that we knew was going to happen since he was 3 months old.  The pediatric urologist told us the best time to do it was when he was 6 months, the age that he would be able to tolerate the anesthia.

I dreaded his surgery. It made me worried and sad to think of about it. We had it scheduled for the day after Mother's Day. (Speaking of Mother's Day, Jackson let us watch The Notebook. He even enjoyed watching it, I think.)

When the nurse called the Friday before to tell me what time to come in, she asked me if Jackson was breast-fed or bottle-fed. He is both, so I told her, "Oh we do half and half." She kind of paused and was like, "Well don't do half and half! Only do milk until 4 am!!" I was a little bit confused until I hung up and figured she probably thought I meant


I was pretty worried about the whole fasting before the surgery thing. We woke Jackson up at 3:30 am to feed him one last time. Unfortunetly when we woke him up, he thought it was time to play, not eat, and would not take his bottle. The little stinker! We managed to coax him into eating a little bit and then rocked him back to sleep.

We had to wake him up again to take him in to have his surgery done. We got all checked in and they had us put him in these little hospital jammies.

Jackson really liked that wall toy. I don't blame him, it was pretty cool. The nurse came in and took his blood pressure, temperature, heart rate, etc. She commented on how cute and good-natured Jackson was. I'm sure she tells every parent that, but it was nice to hear!

After they got his medical history/vitals, we were taken to a pre-op waiting room where there was a lot of little kids playing in their hospital jammies waiting to be whisked away to surgery. Jackson was the youngest one there, by far. The nurse told me to hide my water bottle, so none of the kids would steal it and drink it. The doctor that was doing the surgery was running an hour and a half late. My heart sank when I heard that. Jackson hadn't had anything to eat all day, and he was getting tired. The waiting room had all sorts of toys there. He especially liked this lava lamp pillar thing. It was his favorite.

The entire time we were waiting, Jackson never cried once. He was so good. It made me even more sad to see him so happy when we were about to make him have surgery. He didn't even know what was coming! I kept thinking about how he wasn't going to understand what was happening and how even though it was for his health, we were causing him intentional pain. I may or may not have shed a few tears in the waiting room. I was more scared than he was!

Happy Boy!

He ended up falling asleep while we waited.

The anesthiologist came and took Jackson away. Jackson had just woken up, so he was pretty groggy and confused. He kept staring at this crazy guy that was taking him away. I guess when they take him back there, they put a mask on his face to put him to sleep. Then they gave him an IV. I thought that was a whole lot better than having to fight him while trying to put an IV in.

We were then taken to another waiting room and waited for almost 2 1/2 hours. The receptionist kept coming over to update us.

After the surgery, only one visitor could go see Jackson in the PACU. I went and he was fussing and still had his eyes closed. He was suuuper pale. This really petite nurse was holding him and he looked HUGE. I held him in my arms and there was so many wires and IVs attached to him, it was hard to hold him. He wasn't really aware of what was going on.

I was able to give him a bottle. When he was drinking, his heart rate dipped really low, until it got to the 35s. The noise that was beeping indicating his heart rate kept lowering in pitch and it was pretty scary. The nurse told me to take out the bottle and let him breath because he wasn't breathing while he was eating. The optimum heart rate is 90 for Jackson. His eyes were open and pointed in my direction, but they weren't focused. It was a little unsettling. It was pretty hard to see him that way. I see all sorts of things like this in the ER and it's no big deal, but when it's your own child, it's different. Jackson's surgery has made me a little more compassionate at work now.

We were then sent to ANOTHER room, a surgery recovery room. Jackson was super fussy and they gave him a strong dose of pain medicine which made him go to sleep. After a little bit, we were able to take him home. I was pretty nervous.

We tried to get his medicines filled at the local pharmacy, but they didn't carry the correct dose of the pain medicine. We had to go to another pharmacy to get it. It felt like a wild goose chase!

The recovery process was hard, but not as bad as I expected it to be. I felt so guilty giving Jackson the pain medicine because it made him dizzy and loopy. He would try to reach for toys and not quite be able to focus enough to get it. The pharmacist also warned me about giving it to him because it lowers breathing rate. We ended up sleeping with him for the nights he was taking the medicine. We tried to get him off the medicine pretty early, but it was a mistake! He was in so much pain!

 Zonked out.

Luckily, he is mostly recovered now. He went to his check up appointment and the doctor said we have been taking good care of the surgery site. He was a little worried about how much swelling there still was, so we have to go back in in the next couple weeks for another check up. Shucks! I was hoping to be done worrying about this! We went to our pediatrician yesterday, and he looked at it too. I guess he was a little worried about it, and had us call the urology office today to ask a couple questions.

Hopefully soon though, everything will be back to normal! I do feel blessed that we have insurance and modern medicine to help fix problems like this. I'm also grateful that Jackson's surgery wasn't too major and that he was able to bounce back pretty quickly!

Happy boy a couple days after his surgery.