May 18, 2014: Happy Birthday, Chris!

Well, it’s a big day around here—Chris turned 38 today! He says he can no longer squeak by as in his “mid-thirties.” Join the club, my friend. 😉 He didn’t really have any specific things he wanted to do to celebrate, which is good because our plans ended up changing anyway! Originally, Grandma Kathy and Papa were going to watch the boys so we could have an early dinner date on Saturday night. However, Sam threw a wrench in things by getting sick (more on that later!), and we didn’t want to risk passing it on to the grandparents, so we cancelled our date. However, we had a nice weekend anyway!

On Saturday morning, our community had its annual garage sale. Since we had a lot of junk (okay, baby stuff) to get rid of, we decided to participate. It was actually a lot of fun. It didn’t feel like we sold that much, but we ended up making about $170 off the sale—wheeeeee! I promptly spent $40 of it, but the rest will be used for spending money on our upcoming vacation!

In case you’re wondering what I spent it on, the answer is a Roomba! You know, those robotic vacuums? I’ve wanted one for a while, but they’re quite pricey. However, one of our neighbors was selling one at their garage sale, and I snatched it up! Two of my friends have Roombas and love them. Both say the same thing—it doesn’t do as thorough of a job as manual vacuuming, but if you want something to pick up dust and dog hair on a daily basis, it’s perfect. Well, you’re speaking my language! Truth is, I like having clean floors. I walk around barefoot or in slippers a lot, and I hate having crumbs and dog hair everywhere. But I rarely get time to vacuum, and I love the idea of having something that will pick up the worst of it for me. Roomba took his maiden voyage today, and I was delighted to see how much dust and dog hair he picked up on his 35-minute cleaning of our kitchen/family room, even though I had just vacuumed and mopped a good portion of the room the day before. (Okay, I could be a glass-half-empty type and say, “How is there still so much dirt and dog hair when I just vacuumed and mopped?” But instead I’ll be a glass-half-full type and say, “Wow, Roomba, nice work!!”)

So anyway, Roomba is my new best friend. I’m in love with him. Chris thinks I’m slightly insane, but he’s indulging my new love. 😉

Speaking of love, a very short testament to why I love Chris: He was making his delicious scrambled eggs for dinner one night, and we didn’t have much bacon left. When I came downstairs, I saw he had given me all the bacon.  “Why did you give me all the bacon?” I asked. “Because I love you, and you love bacon,” he said sweetly. I was half touched and half somewhat mortified that my husband loves me, and I love bacon. 😉 Aw, but he knows I love him too—and more than bacon, in fact. Though I really, really do love bacon, it’s true.

Anyway, after the garage sale we went out to lunch with a gift certificate we had from Christmas. Nothing like procrastinating, eh? It was to a local kid-friendly sports bar (yes, bar…kid friendly…I know it sounds a bit odd!), so our “birthday date” turned out to be lunch as a party of four rather than a romantic dinner for two. But it was lovely all the same!

And on Sunday, Chris’s actual birthday, we decided to go for a hike. Theo’s at a great age for hikes—he loves to wander around and look at flowers (he’s obsessed with finding California poppies, which these days are pretty easy to find!), and my sister got him a camera attachment for his little Leapster handheld game, so he brings that along and takes pictures while we hike. And Sam loves riding in the hiking backpack, seeing the sights from up high, so it’s a lot of fun to take the two of them.

This time, we decided to hike on a dormant volcano in Oakland. (I think it erupted a couple million years ago—it’s long dormant.) I had read it was a good kid-friendly hike, and indeed it was. I think we went somewhere between two and three miles, and there was a lovely breeze to keep us cool in the sunny spots.

The funny part about hiking is that Theo is lately a bit of the “Rules Police.” And this being warm, sunny California, it’s not at all unusual to see men hiking without shirts. Like many kids, Theo went through a phase of wanting to take his clothes off, so we taught him that in public, you keep your clothes on. Well, he is really firm on that rule, and he calls out everyone he sees shirtless! Today it was a group of three young men: “They’re not hiking appropriately! They don’t have clothes on!” Last week it was a shirtless man jogging: “Hey, that man isn’t being appropriate!! Why is he jogging with a belly?!” Being that Theo is six years old and a rather LOUD child, you can imagine that these “inappropriate” hikers/joggers overhear. 😉 So did the people who cut in front of us at lunch today: “Hey! They cut in line!” To their credit, they were very gracious and said, “He’s right—I think we did go ahead of you! Please go first…” No harm done, but the Rules Police can be a bit intense about such things. 😉

Anyway, I said I’d get back to the bit about Sam being sick, so here ’tis: I think Sam caught whatever Theo and Chris had last week. Chris dropped him at Early Intervention on Friday morning, and I got a call 45 minutes later saying that Sam had been unusually fussy, so they took his temperature, and it was over 100. I went right over to pick him up (it’s just five minutes from our house), and when I got there he was lying listlessly in one of the teacher’s arms with a cold cloth on his head, half asleep. I got him home, gave him some Motrin, and he promptly took a 3.5-hour nap! When he woke up, he seemed much improved, and I took him with me to take Theo to OT. But near the end of OT, the Motrin must’ve started wearing off, and within 45 minutes his fever had climbed to 103.6. (We were driving home, so I couldn’t give him anything to bring it down until we got home.) He was crying and miserable, so we gave him some more Motrin. His fever climbed back up in the middle of the night, and he needed another dose. Saturday morning, he woke with just a low fever, but he had absolutely no energy. He signed for food but then just slumped in the high chair and stared at me, with no desire to eat. His fever started climbing a bit, so I gave him some more Motrin and put him back down for a nap. When he woke up, the fever was gone, and he had a lot more energy. He got progressively better as the morning went on and seemed fine by afternoon. And he’s been totally fine today. So whatever it was, it was a nasty, quick bug that came on quickly, hit hard, and then left. Sounds a lot like what Chris and Theo had—both of them were fine one minute and then almost in the blink of an eye, started running a fever and feeling lousy. Weird.

Somehow, I escaped (so far!)…I think. The garage sale completely wiped me out yesterday, and I fell asleep twice before bedtime, which I never do. (I joked to Chris that if it wasn’t physically impossible, I’d think I was pregnant—the only time I fall asleep like that is when I’m pregnant! But no, I am most assuredly not.) And today, I was bone-tired this morning and fell asleep in the car this afternoon. But nothing so bad that I couldn’t go hiking and such. Just weird exhaustion, which now seems to be gone. So who knows—maybe that was my version of the bug. Whatever it is, hopefully it has now left our house for good. I hate it when Sam is sick! I don’t like it when anyone is sick, but I turn into a bit of a nervous wreck when it’s Sam, because I’ve seen so many of his little buddies with DS end up in the hospital after just a random cold that wouldn’t cause any issue in a kid with the typical number of chromosomes. It just scares me every time. This time, I think we got lucky again. Thank goodness…

As long as I’m on the subject of Sam, I’ll also share that I got his four-week thyroid labs done! The Kaiser lab confirmed that they can run the needed tests—the doctor just had to enter it as a miscellaneous special order because it’s not a test they normally run. And I hope they’re right—I haven’t gotten the results from that one (Reverse T3 test) yet, so I’m still waiting. But I have gotten the results for the TSH, and YAY!!! The TSH is the thyroid test that all doctors look at, regardless of their protocol for treating hypothyroidism. (The Reverse T3 is the questionable one that some doctors think is important and others don’t.) Sam’s TSH has frequently been over the normal range, and the past couple have been trending higher. Optimal thyroid functioning for a kid is supposedly under 3.0, and Kaiser considers over 4.0 to be out of the normal range. Sam’s most recent test (before starting treatment) was 7.7, I believe, and the one before that was 6.2 or something. Guess what his one-month-on-meds TSH is? 1.92!!!!! WAHOO!!!! Now we just have to wait for that Reverse T3 to make sure it’s in the normal range, too, but YAY—we’ve at least got one number where it should be!!

So that was our week in a nutshell—the weekend was eventful but the week itself was pretty ho-hum. But I need to wrap up this week’s blog with a sad bit. Chris’s Grandma Norma, who is 91, has been in the hospital for a few days with what the doctors thought might be a bowel obstruction. As it turns out, it’s colon cancer, and the prognosis is not good. They removed most of a lemon-sized tumor on Saturday night, but it has spread. I don’t think the full extent is known yet, but the prognosis isn’t positive. Making it to 91 years old in good health is an amazing blessing, of course, but no one wants to see anyone suffer, and that’s what’s most sad about this news. So if you’re the praying type and you can spare a prayer that Grandma Norma lives out her life as pain-free as possible, that would be wonderful. And if you’re not the praying type and you just want to send some thoughts of pain-free peace her way, that would be wonderful too. She’s a sweet lady who has always been kind to me and my boys, and she is much loved by all of Chris’s family. All of us simply hope that as she faces this, she can remain as comfortable as possible.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *