Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Operation Tubes; A Success

I will start this post by saying that we are so blessed to have two healthy children. Sure, Nathan had a small procedure today, that went extremely well, but I can't help but think about so many little children out there who are so sick. There's a young boy from our church who is just starting cancer treatments, following what was supposed to be a routine tonsillectomy. And I can't even imagine the exhaustion that those parents must be experiencing. I was completely drained after this whole ordeal, and it wasn't even that big of a deal! I know there were a lot of people thinking about Nathan today, so I'll give an overview of what all went down.

We arrived at the Surgicenter at 7:15am and got all checked in. Then we began the waiting game. Luckily there was a very nice play area for the kids. Nate was pretty cranky at first, and he was really hungry, but we were able to distract him with some of the toys. It wasn't until after 8:00am that we finally got called back into the Pre-Op area where we met with a nurse. We signed all the scary papers that say all the scary things that could happen and had Nathan change into some cute, purple hospital PJs. And we waited some more. Then the anesthesiologist came in, asked a few questions, asked if we had any questions, and then left. More waiting. Then our ENT, who also did the surgery, came in and did the same. Wait. The nurse came back in with some medicine for Nathan, which consisted of a sedative and Tylenol. It didn't seem to affect him too much, but I'm glad they gave it to him when they did because he was starting to get so antsy and angry! He became calm and then the nurse came to get him to take him to the OR. That was hard...seeing them take him away. That was about 9:10am. We went to the waiting room, had a cup of coffee, and literally 10 minutes later we were told to go to the consulation room to meet with the ENT, since they were all finished. He told us that there had been a lot of thick fluid in Nate's ears, which probably would've turned into an infection. He gave us some drops and told us to follow up in 2-3 weeks. Then we had to wait about 10 more minutes while they were waking Nathan up in recovery. When we walked into the recovery area, I could hear Nathan screaming. He was so upset. Actually, he seemed pissed! He just didn't know what was going on and what had happened to him. I've never been under general anesthesia, so I don't even know what it feels like. I'm sure it was scary for him. Joe and I tried to hold him as he writhed around. He cried for about a 1/2 hour straight. Nothing we did could comfort him, and that was hard. But, finally, we were discharged, and Nathan calmed down once we were in the car.

When we got home, we sat on the couch and watched "American Idol" and he snacked on some graham crackers and drank his juice. Then we was back to his old self. Running around, pulling out toys, wouldn've have guessed he had had surgery earlier that morning. Ella was at my parent's house for the day, which was a huge help. It was nice to be able to give my full attention to Nathan when he really needed it.

So that's done. Hopefully now we will be free of ear infections. Now it's time to relax and take a deep breath, and see who got kicked of of "American Idol."

Thursday, March 25, 2010

I Feel Like...

We found out that the company Joe works for has decided to continue with the high deductible insurance plan, but at a $6,000 cap. And, we found out the Nathan's procedure will cost more like $5,000 + instead of the $3,000 we were originally told. So guess who's going to be paying nearly $6,000 Out. Of. Pocket. That's right...these suckers right here. I don't know about you, but we just don't have an extra $6,000 laying around. Sure, we'll figure it out. I'll pick up some extra shifts, we'll watch our spending, we'll get on a payment plan, we'll sell our plasma...whatever it takes. Okay, maybe not the last one. We'll be fine. But man, does this blow.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Time for Tubes

We met with the ENT yesterday. He checked Nate's ears, which were not currently infected, but did have fluid in both. We really liked the doctor and he explained everything very well. He was not pushy at all, and basically said that whatever we choose, he would support the decision. He did say that Nate is a good candidate for ear tubes, but it's our call. After discussing the pros and cons and talking to many people who have had this experience before, we decided to go ahead with the procedure. Nathan will have the procedure done at a surgery center affiliated with Children's Hospital of Wisconsin on Wednesday, March 31st, probably around 8:30am. Our biggest concern at this point is that he will be NPO (nothing by mouth) after midnight the previous night. When he wakes up in the morning, he always seems STARVING! He goes right to the fridge. He's gonna be pissed. Our other concern, sadly, is the cost. We have a high deductible plan with an HSA (Health Savings Account) which means we pay everything out-of-pocket up to $4,000, but use the HSA to pay those costs. An HSA is somewhat like a Flex Healthcare Account. However, an HSA is different in that the money is not all there immediately, like a Flex. Money is taken out of Joe's paycheck and put into the HSA. Long story short, we're going to be paying a lot of money out-of-pocket. Like over $1,000. Like over $2,000. Like almost $3,000! Cringe.

But, our little boy will hopefully get some relief and we will hopefully avoid the pediatrician's office every month! So that is where we stand on the ear tube issue. Wish us luck!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Up to Date

It's been a rough week or so, which is why it's been so long since I've updated this blog. Today I was thinking about whether or not I should continue to blog, since I can't seem to find the time to do anything extra these days. But, I think I will continue and just not stress out about it.

Guess who's been sick. Nathan. He has seriously been sick since he was born. This was bad though. For three days, he was throwing up. And I mean really throwing up. He would be fine all day, and then for three days straight, puked in the evening only. He's slowly getting his appetite back, but he has been SO CLINGY and CRANKY. It's to the point where I literally cannot get anything done during the day. The house is a mess, I look like a mess, my emotions are a mess...I'm stressed! My diet has gone out the window this past month and with it, my exercise routine, so of course I've put on a few pounds. I got on the elliptical this evening, but the TV was screwed up and I didn't even have I only stayed on for 15 minutes. I decided to organize my coupons instead. Which, by the way, has nearly cut our grocery/household spending by 50%, according to Joe. Go me! Back to Nate...we go to the ENT tomorrow. I have no idea what to expect. Tubes? Medication? Tests? No idea. I wouldn't be surprised if he has an ear infection right now. Maybe that's why he's so whinny.

The pictures below are from my night away with the girls from Newcomers. We stayed in a condo at Blue Harbor Resort in Sheyboygan, Wisconsin. We had great food, some good laughs, and a full night sleep! We even took advantage of the indoor water park. I'm sure we looked hilarious...8 grown women without children, going down the water slides! Oh well...we had a blast. I always say this, but I'm really glad I joined Newcomers. I have made some great friends and the kids have fun at the Kidsclub events.

I'm anxiously awaiting the news that Christine has had her twins. She has been on bed rest for 11 weeks and just yesterday reached the magical 36 week point. Her bed rest was lifted and she was able to sit upright! I didn't realize she couldn't even sit up in bed. She seriously had to lay almost flat. She is amazing and I can't wait to go visit her family in July. Twins...can you even imagine?
Joe has been working crazy hours, but with the extra money he's pulling in, we are probably going to hire someone to help us finish the basement. With two young kids, it's nearly impossible to complete home improvement projects in a timely manner!
My parents are pretty much all unpacked. Their house looks great, and it's exciting to see what their yard looks like without snow! I am loving having them so close by. Nathan can be heard saying, "Gigi, Papa, Gigi, Papa," over and over again. Ella had her first sleep-over in her "bedroom" at my parents house while I was with the ladies. It's so nice that she can get the one-on-one attention from them, since Nathan makes it very difficult for me to do so. I know once he's a little older, we'll be able to do more activities, but right now it's pretty hard.
Well, on to a new week. I'll update about our ENT appointment in the next few days. But don't hold your breath. :)

Friday, March 12, 2010

Funny Face

I wanted to share a quick video of Nathan making his "funny face." It cracks me up every time

I returned from my mini-vacation on Monday. I was SO THRILLED when my Dad picked me up from the airport and discovered that Ella was waiting for me in the back seat! I was so happy to see her and hug her. When I got home, Nathan was waiting for me and gave me a big hug. I missed my kids so much and was happy to return home, but it was also amazing to get away for a few days and visit my oldest friend. She's not old, we're the same age, but we've been friends since Kindergarten. We've been friends for 25 years!

I flew into Columbus last Thursday evening after work. Andrea picked me up from the airport and we just went back to her house, since it was pretty late. I got to see her house for the first time and I absolutely fell in love with it. It was build in 1907 and has so much charm and character. Her neighborhood and the neighborhoods surrounding hers were adorable! Cobblestone streets, skinny brick houses...I forgot I was in Columbus, Ohio. After getting over my love for her house, and saying hello to her husband Mark, we cracked open a bottle of wine and just chatted for hours. Over the next few days, we got pedicures (see our beautiful toes below), visited the public market, went to the art museum, went shopping, lounged in the hot-tub with champagne, ate too much, drank too much, and slept too much. And it was awesome!!!

I am so lucky that Andrea and I are still friends after all of this time. Check out the picture of us below, circa 1989 or so. Our friend Becky is in the middle.