Saturday, 20 October 2012

Wombat has grommets! And no adenoids.

It appears that my body has finally adjusted to waking up at 5:40am during the week. So much so, that I can't sleep in much past that time on the weekend. Unless I deliberately push myself to stay up late, and if I do that, I pay for it the next week.

As I was snuggling in bed next to my Wombat, it occurred to me that I hadn't yet gotten around to blogging about his surgery, so I figure I may as well do it now while the day is quiet and all my boys are still sleeping.

Wombat had grommets put into both of his ear drums and also had his adenoids removed. We had to be at the hospital at 7:30am for admission and Seagull had to be dropped off at childcare on the way. It takes about 30 minutes to drive from the childcare centre to the hospital Wombat had his operation at, and the childcare centre opens at 6:45am, so the timing was always going to be tight. Fortunately, Seagull woke up early by himself on Thursday morning and after the most brief of power struggles, he chose to dress himself rather than have me do it for him.

We managed to make it to the hospital right on 7:30am and found out where we had to go. Wombat was the first surgical patient for the day. There was a few forms I had to sign, then we went to a waiting area where I was provided with a gown, head, and shoe coverings, then the anaesthetist came to discuss his role with us.

Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App
Wombat playing with Thunder Maker's phone pre-surgery

Soon afterwards, a nurse came to collect Wombat and I to take us to the operating theatre. Once we were there, she asked me to hold Wombat in my lap so that he was facing to my right. The anaesthetist then came to put the mask over Wombat's face. He didn't like it and really struggled, but myself and the nurse held his hands out of the way. He was crying, but after a few seconds I could see that the gas was starting to work. After a few more seconds Wombat stopped crying and went all limp. I helped the anaesthetist and the nurse get Wombat onto the table, then I gave him a kiss and said goodbye, and went to wait with Thunder Maker in the waiting area.

After about 45 minutes, a nurse came to get me. He took me to the post operative recovery area. As I walked into the room, I could see that Wombat was crying and he was being held by the Nursing Unit Manager (NUM). Once I got to them, the NUM handed Wombat over to me. As soon as I gave Wombat a cuddle, he stopped crying. I was provided with a comfy chair, so I sat on it and continued to give Wombat cuddles.

Wombat seemed to be really fidgety and was rolling his face back and forth over my chest. The NUM explained that the anaesthetic can make the nose itchy, so Wombat was just trying to scratch it. She explained that Wombat was getting paracetamol through his IV line, but asked if I thought he needed something else, as she had a stronger pain killer drawn up that she could put into his line. I felt that he looked like he could do with it, so the NUM found an access point in the line near Wombat's foot (which is where it had been inserted) and gave him the medication.

Wombat seemed to settle down after that and went to sleep on me. Until I needed to get up to go to the toilet about an hour later. I thought it would be safe to transfer the sleeping Wombat onto the bed. I was wrong. He woke up and started howling. When I got back, the male nurse (who shall remain anonymous) who worked in the post-op recovery area was cuddling Wombat. Apparently he had thrashed around so much, they needed to get the male nurse to hold Wombat as he was the only one with enough strength to hold him.

It was about the time I got back that Wombat discovered the IV line in his foot. He then spent the next 20 minutes trying to get it out with the nurses and myself trying just as hard to stop him. Wombat and I got moved to an area around the corner where there was a TV. The nurse put on ABC 4 Kids for Wombat and went to get him some green jelly.

Once Wombat ate all of the jelly, the NUM came to take the IV line out of Wombat's foot. Once that was done, we got to move to another recovery area where Thunder Maker was able to join us and I was able to de-gown. We got to sit on reclining chairs in front of a TV, and Wombat was given ice cream and more green jelly. After about 45 minutes, we were allowed to go home.

Wombat fell asleep in the car on the way home, and we were able to move him into bed without waking him, where he slept for another couple of hours.

Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App
Sleepy Wombat. His sticker says 'Star Patient'. Wombat likes stars.

We have to make sure that we keep Wombat's ears dry, so I went and bought some ear putty that afternoon. We will be getting custom made earplugs made for him, but the lady who makes them in our area is on holidays and won't be back until late next week. In the meantime, I figure that ear putty will do the job just fine. I had bought Wombat a silicon swimming cap from the centre where the boys have their swimming lessons, and I decided to put it on Wombat as another layer of water protection in the bath.

Uploaded from the Photobucket iPhone App
As you can see, Wombat is really thrilled about his swimming cap.

About 30 seconds after this photo was taken, Wombat ripped the swimming cap off. As he didn't seem to be too worried about the ear putty, I just made sure he didn't get his head wet and let him stay in the bath.

We have this weekend off swimming lessons as neither of the boys are allowed to swim. Seagull's reason for not being allowed to swim is a whole other post for another day.

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Wombat is getting grommets!

So much has been happening since I last blogged. Now that uni is more or less finished for the year (hopefully I my application for deferrment for the exam I missed due to gastro gets approved), I have a bit more time to myself and I plan to use it to blog more often.

My big news is that Wombat got bumped up the list to visit the ENT surgeon. Our initial appointment was for mid-November, but I got a phone call on Friday 5 Sep asking if I could bring Wombat in on Monday. Um, hell yes!

At the appointment, the ENT surgeon said that as Wombat had been suffering from a runny nose for 12 months and his hearing has been affected for so long, she wasn't going to stuff around with prescribing a month long course of antibiotics, and recommended bilateral grommets and an adenoidectomy. I'm paraphrasing here, and more was said, but that was the essence of the discussion.

The ENT surgeon said we could more or less choose our own date, but the soonest she could fit us in was 18 Oct. I immediately booked Wombat in for 18 Oct. It was such a relief to have my suspicions confirmed and to have a definite date to have Wombat fixed up.

The eve of Wombat's surgery is now upon us. I got an SMS from the hospital this afternoon to advise that Wombat is scheduled for admission at 7:30am. I'm mostly excited and just a little nervous. I'm really looking forward to having two children who can hear properly.

I'll keep you posted about Wombat's progress after the surgery.

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Wombat's hearing test

So, you want to take a guess at why I've been MIA lately? Yep, uni. I can't promise it won't happen again between now and mid-October when I'll have finished my exams and my second (!) year of uni. Doing three subjects a term while working full time and looking after two young children doesn't leave me with much spare time for blogging.

In saying that, I do still check my RSS feed every day and read all my favourite blogs. I was reading a post by Tara at Our Whirlwind Adventures last week about how Master S had hearing difficulties, and it made me think a lot about our own situation with Wombat.

I mentioned back in March that we had taken Wombat to a speech pathologist because he wasn't talking much. We did the exercises with Wombat that the speech pathologist had recommended. For a while, he seemed to be making more of an effort to talk. When the speech pathologist rang after a month to see how we were going, I told her that I felt that we were making some progress. We organised for her to call again and check up on us in three months time.

Fast forward to three months later, and I mentioned in the follow-up call that Wombat was speaking more, but he still wasn't speaking as much as I thought he should be for his age. We organised a review appointment, which took place a few weeks ago.

As Wombat and Seagull were both in child care, Thunder Maker and I picked both of them up to take to the appointment. Seagull tried to take over and make it all about him. Wombat started majorly beating the shit out of Seagull. Seagull and Thunder Maker were ejected from the building so the speech pathologist could interact with Wombat uninterrupted. We agreed that as useful as it was for her to see the interaction between the two of them, Seagull would be kept well away from any further appointments.

It was mentioned at our initial appointment back in March that it would be worth getting Wombat's hearing checked, just to make sure it was OK. We were a bit short on funds at the time and Thunder Maker said that we didn't need to have Wombat's hearing checked, as he responds to us asking him to do things all the time. Me explaining that a child with glue ear still has some level of hearing fell on deaf ears. Yeah, I went there.

Anyway, after our last speech pathology appointment, I put my foot down and said that we really needed to get Wombat's hearing checked. I went ahead and made the appointment. Wombat had that appointment this afternoon.

Thunder Maker took Wombat to the appointment. When I got home from work, Thunder Maker said that Wombat's test had revealed that he has significant hearing loss. They weren't able to complete the pressure test, as Wombat wouldn't hold his head still, but the audiologists said that the fact that Wombat has been a mobile snot factory since he was about 8 months old probably means that he has quite a bit of fluid in his ears.

The audiologists are apparently going to forward the report to our GP, so we need to make an appointment with her to get a referral to an ENT specialist.

I know this sounds horrible, but I'm glad Wombat has something wrong with his hearing. At least now we have a reason for why he doesn't talk much, and we can get it fixed.

Monday, 4 June 2012

Just keep running, running, running

I've been doing quite a bit of running lately. It started around the time that I had to stop going to my fitness classes because I could no longer afford the fees.

I had been thinking that I needed to find the motivation to do something by myself and kept telling myself that I would go out for a run of an evening. Then the evening would roll around and I didn't want to do anything other than get comfy, watch TV and go to bed.

One evening after dinner I was about to go and get a glass of red when I realised that I'd been telling myself all day that I would go for a run that evening. I realised that if I had a glass of wine that there is no way I'd be able to run afterward, so I dragged my arse off the lounge, got changed, grabbed my iPhone, stuck it in my arm band holder and got running. I wasn't starting completely from scratch fitness-wise, but it's been a while since I've run any sort of distance and I was feeling a bit apprehensive.

I had no real plan in mind, I just decided to run and see where it took me. I know my general area well enough to know what direction I need to get back home, so I just cruised along and followed my nose. When I felt like I'd been out for long enough, I started to head back home. I decided to have that glass of red when I got back home.

Going for a run felt so good that I've been doing it most nights since except for the week I spent on night shift at work. I enjoy the feeling of being out of an evening getting very little some speed up, getting my heart rate up, and most importantly, it's the only 30-45 minutes of my entire day that I get all to myself. It's the having a small amount of time all to myself that I enjoy the most.

On the nights I don't run, either because I've done PT at work that day, or I'm having a rest day, I really miss it. I know I do need to have rest days, but I still feel guilty that I'm not out doing something.

I've been finding that I'm able to run faster and further even just in the few weeks that I've been running regularly. It's a wonderful feeling. I find that listening to music while I run is a great way to keep myself going as I tend to listen to music that is reasonably fast and has a good beat to it.

On Friday night when I got back from my run, I decided to jump on Facebook. One of my friends had posted up a link about early bird entry for the City 2 Surf and it ended at midnight. On a whim, I decided to enter. I figure it gives me something to aim toward and gives me another reason to keep pushing myself to run faster and further. I'm crapping myself slightly at the thought of Heartbreak Hill though.

Sunday, 3 June 2012

The unwelcome visitor

Normally I like visitors. Not this one though. This particular visitor stopped coming just over four years ago and to say I was glad is an understatement.

However, I started noticing signs a couple of weeks ago that this particular visitor was probably going to be paying me a visit again soon - the mucus, the constant foul mood, a buttload of bloating and constipation.

This afternoon, I discovered that my feeling had been correct. Aunty Flow has returned. Three shifts in a seven week period was probably enough to throw Wombat's breastfeeding pattern out of whack enough that Mama Progesterone was able to get a foothold and get Sister Ovulation started again. Or, you know, maybe it was just my time. Whatever.

Right now I am trying to get the hang of using a menstrual cup and trying to figure out what the hell I can take for period pain that is compatible with breastfeeding. I've always had heavy, painful periods and being on the pill largely stopped that. However, I'm not overly keen on going on any form of the pill while breastfeeding as I don't want the hormones passing through my milk to Wombat.

After four years without a period, it all feels a bit new to me. I suppose I'll figure it out as I go along though. This menstrual cup had better bloody work properly.

What do you take for period pain? Did you find your periods changed after having children?

Thursday, 3 May 2012

25 things you may or may not know about me

So, seeing as I have been all sharing and unveiling myself-like lately, I figured that it was only fair that I share some more. Below is a list of things that you may or may not know about me. Probably not, though.

1. My favourite fruit is watermelon. There's something about sitting on the back lawn on a Summer's afternoon with a massive wedge of watermelon and a knife to cut chunks off and flick the seeds out with that I have always loved.

2. I've always believed that you have to love yourself and be comfortable in your own sking before anyone else is able to love you.

3. My favourite colour is green. It tends to be hard to find green clothing, but I always have my eye out for it.

4. I'm very much into wearing jeans. It is rare to see me wearing anything other than jeans on the lower half of my body in the cooler months. Even in Summer, I often wear denim shorts.

5. I hate the colour pink. Blech!

6. I find red hair attractive.

7. The only electronic game I have ever finished in it's entirity is Lego Harry Potter Years 1-4 on my iPad. Oh, and Cosmo Part 1. I was never able to find parts 2 and 3.

8. I used to wear my hair in a French roll to school nearly every day in year 10. Then I cut it short for the first time at the end of the year after the formal.

9. The first cassette I ever owned was ABBA Gold.

10. The first and only record I ever owned was a Chipmunks record. I'm pretty sure my Dad still has it somewhere.

11. I loved Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles as a child. Donatello was my favourite turtle. It took me years to figure out that Krang was meant to be a brain. I always thought he was just some pink blobby thing. Oh, and the new version of it sucks. April is meant to be a reporter, not a scientist, damnit!

12. I have not had a period in over 4 years. Pregnancy and lactation inducced amenorhea FTW!

13. My Dad picked my first name after his favourite character off some poxy 80's cop show. He wanted to name one of my sisters Britney after Britney Spears. Thankfully, I talked him out of that one.

14. I wear glasses because I am long-sighted. I'm currently going through my 'nerd glasses' phase.

15. I used to play netball. My position was WD, although I played GK for one season when my team lost all but 3 of our players to another team and all of our new players played attack positions. We always smashed the team with all of the deserters in it whenever we played them.

16. I don't wear silver. Except for my Pandora bracelet, but that's only because I really wanted one and can't afford the $$$ for a gold one. Otherwise, I'm strictly a yellow/rose gold girl.

17. My all-time favourite song is 'Kryptonite' by 3 Doors Down.

18. I like to make my own clothes. Unfortunately, I don't get the time to sew much these days.

19. I'm currently studying Medical Science with a Nutrition major. I eventually want to specialise in paediatric nutrition and become a lactation consultant. I have no interest in working with middle aged people with chronic lifestyle diseases.

20. I had my ears pierced when I was 3. Mum was friends with the jeweller and he was always asking if he could do it. Instead of saying 'no' like she always did, Mum told him one day to ask me. The rest, as they say, is history.

21. I can't stand having my navel touched. Ever since I had a laparoscopy when I was 19, even touching it myself makes my skin crawl.

22. I have (more or less) perfectly straight teeth and have never worn braces. I have also never had a filling. The only dental work I've ever had done was having my wisdom teeth out.

23. I have really small hands and feet.

24. I'd love a tattoo symbolising my boys, but I'm worried that if I got one, I'd end up hating it.

25. I tend to swear in conversation. For some reason though, I can't bring myself to do it when writing. I feel like it will come across as being forced. I suppose I take myself a lot more seriously in written form than I otherwise would.

So there you have it. A list of stuff that you probably didn't know about me. Or really need to know for that matter, but meh, this is my blog and I'll write what I damn well want to write on it.

Is there anything interesting about yourself that you feel like sharing while you're here?

Monday, 30 April 2012

My weight loss project - the start

I’ve been reading Tina’s blog for a while and have been eagerly following her weight loss journey. I am so inspired that she is making an active effort to change her lifestyle, sticking with it and seeing some impressive results. Tina still has a way to go to reach her end goal, but she is not giving up and that’s what I find particularly inspiring.

I want to lose weight to reduce my risk of developing chronic diseases. My maternal grandmother is overweight and has cardiovascular problems and has developed type 2 diabetes that no longer responds to diet, so she is on insulin. My mother is also overweight and has been diagnosed as being pre-diabetic. Mum has also had problems with high blood pressure. If I don’t lose some weight, that will be me in another 20 – 40 years.

I also want to set a good example for Seagull and Wombat. I want them to know that exercise and eating healthy nutrient-rich, low energy foods are important to living a healthy life.

In addition to the above, I’m studying Nutrition at uni. I would like to work as a Nutritionist once I finish uni. How much credibility do you think a fat Nutritionist has?

I have decided to blog weekly to document my weight loss and to keep myself accountable. In addition to weighing myself, I will be taking waist and hip measurements. I’ve decided not to measure my bust because I am breastfeeding and my bust measurement can vary a lot depending on when Wombat last breastfed.

My goals are to get down to 60kg and to get my waist measurement down to 75cm.

My starting measurements are:

Starting weight

Weight: 69.3kg
Waist: 85cm
Hips: 101cm

Between not feeling very well lately and working 17 days out of the last 21, 14 of them being either a late or early shift, I've been making up plenty of excuses not to exercise. I've been going to Step Into Life outdoor group personal training sessions since April last year.

With this week off work, I decided that I would go to a few extra Step Into Life sessions, starting with the 6:15am Monday boxercise class. When I woke up just after 5am this morning, I started coming up with every excuse in the book not to go. I was exhausted after coming off shift, I needed the sleep, the glands in my neck were coming up, Wombat wanted a feed and I probably wouldn’t make it out the door in time.

Then I thought to myself “I’d bet that Tina wouldn’t give up so easily”. That did it, I kicked Wombat off the breast (who promptly went back to sleep) when my alarm went off at 5:20am, weighed myself, got dressed, grabbed my gear and got out the door.

In the end, I was really glad I went. There's something deeply satisfying about exercising whilst the sun is coming up. The glands in my neck still feel sore, but at least I'm getting back on the wagon.