Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Too Tired for Target

Sometimes, when you feel like you kinda got your shit together your kids will make sure to remind you that you don't. Like yesterday.

My Guys are usually very well behaved when we're in a store. We've never had to abandon a shopping trip due to their behavior... Until yesterday.

My Guys are in school (preschool and Pre-K), and normally they get done at noon. This month they're in an enrichment cooking class that has them going until 2:00. This is a long day for them, and they are more tired than usual when they get home. I'm not making excuses for shit behavior, I'm just setting the stage.

So yesterday, I had told them that while the babysitter was here watching Helena, I'd take them to Target to buy some Easter decorations. We're hosting Easter at our house this year, which was a bit of a surprise, but it means that we need to decorate for the festivities rather than just leaving my husband's birthday decorations up until My Little Guy's birthday.

My Guys come home from school, and play outside for a bit until the babysitter arrives. I then load them in the car and everything seems normal. We get to Target. My Big Guy keeps trying to go in the out door, and I have to yell at him to stop because he's going to get hurt when someone is actually exiting and it swings open. This is unusual behavior for him.

We get inside and he asks if he can ride in the cart. I'm like, dude, no. You're almost 6. Walk your ass around the damn store. He whines that he's tired. Tough it out, you're not riding in the damn cart.

We make our way over to the Easter section after grabbing a few other items and as we get into the aisle, My Little Guy immediately loses his shit and starts crying. I ask him what's wrong, and he points at this horrible pre-made Paw Patrol Easter basket and says he wants it but he knows I won't buy it for him (he's correct).

Let's just pause here for a moment to discuss how awful fucking Paw Patrol is. I hate that shit. First of all, what the crap is wrong with all those people in that town that when they have an issue their first thought is to call that weird kid who doesn't seem to have any parents and his fucking DOGS?? That just doesn't make sense. Everything about the show is annoying. Everything. I want to punch that Ryder kid right it the face after I mess up his stupid hair. Secondly, with the bazillion items of merchandising they have created for this stupid show, would it kill them to put Skye on any of it? I've seen her on some of the "girl" toys and clothes but she's almost always missing from any of the boy stuff. My Guys have, on more than one occasion asked why she's not on their stuff and I have no good answer. I mean, I'm not one to get all riled up over feminist issues, but why do you have to cut the girl dog out Nickelodeon? That's crappy. And another reason I hate Paw Patrol.

Ok, back to the story. So My Little Guy is losing his shit over this stupid Paw Patrol Easter basket and while I'm talking to him about this, My Big Guy takes the opportunity to just straight up lay down on the floor in the middle of the aisle at Target. You know, as you do. I calm My Little Guy down and turn and see this nonsense and ask My Big Guy what he's doing. He replies that he's tired, and I won't let him ride in the cart. Yes. It's clearly my fault that you're laying down in the middle of Target. Sigh. I tell him to get up and that's it. We're done.

I fully abandoned the cart in the aisle, took them each by the hand and walked out of that Target. I get them in the car and basically ask them what the crap was going on in there. They really didn't have any answers other than saying how tired they are, and asking to go home to lay down. I mean, ok, I guess if you're so tired that laying down on the nasty-ass floor of Target seems like a valid option you're not just saying that. Clearly this trip to Target was a mistake as we were totally THAT family with the melting down kids walking towards the door.

I got them home, showered and fed and they were both half asleep on the couch before 7:00. They weren't lying.

So today, while they're at Tae Kwon Do, I'm off to the party store to hopefully buy some damn Easter decorations in peace. And without anyone laying on the floor.

Friday, March 11, 2016


I've sat down and tried to write this update about 10 times now and it's just not coming out the way I want it to, so I'm just spewing it out and hitting publish and being done with it.

We've scheduled Helena's corrective open heart surgery. She will go in for a pre-op check on April 7th, and then on Monday, April 11th she will go in for her Rastelli procedure (do your own damn Googling).

We're in a great place right now where she's getting about 90% of the calories she needs orally, and we're still making up the difference using her NG tube and feeding pump at night. We're still giving her a ton of food at night because eve with her weight gain (2 lbs in a month!) she's still underweight, and now with surgery scheduled we want her to be as fat as possible before then.

She's healthy, she's happy... You'd never know there was anything wrong with her if you saw her. She's smiley and has started rolling and is kinda sitting up on her own a bit. She's doing great. That's part of the reason we scheduled the surgery - she's healthy and strong right now, and she's a good size so let's get it over with.



As terrified as I am, her medical team is excited. They all think she's going to do great and come out of surgery even better than she is now. I take comfort in their confidence but I'm still an emotional wreck just thinking about it.

As my husband said, this time around will be both much harder and much easier.

It will be easier because we know her. She's tough. She's feisty. She's a fighter. She's handled every challenge beautifully and done better than anyone had hoped she would. Most babies need their corrective surgery well before six months. Helena will be almost 8 months old when she has hers, and even then she doesn't need it at that time as much as we're choosing to do it at that time. Her oxygen levels are still great (granted she hasn't been growing so she hasn't outgrown her shunt, but still). She's battled a couple colds like a champ. She's a tough cookie.

It will be harder because we know her. When she went in for her shunt surgery she was in the crib in the NICU and we had hardly held her, and she was only two weeks old. Of course we loved her and of course we were scared and worried but now that she's 7 months old, we KNOW her. We know her personality. She's not just a tiny little newborn blob, she's Helena. Handing over Helena for open heart surgery is almost unbearable, and yet it has to be done. She needs to be fixed.

So until April 11th we're just doing business as usual. We've planned My Little Guy's 4th birthday party (the surgery team was wonderful enough to accommodate us in waiting until after his birthday to do Helena's surgery so that he can have a normal birthday), we're attempting to get as many calories in Helena every day we can, and we're working with our therapy team to get her as strong and close to her age development-wise as possible, knowing that she will probably have some regression post-op. She will also have movement restrictions on her until her sternum heals again, so we're doing as much as we can now knowing we're looking at a few miserable weeks of healing down the line where she won't be allowed to move around the way she has been.

It's scary, but at the same time I'm glad that it's scheduled and that it'll be done and we can maybe have a semi-normal summer. As much as I'd love to put off surgery forever, getting it over with is good too.

We thank you all again for all the love and support and your kind words, thoughts and prayers. We're so lucky to have such amazing and understanding friends and family and we truly appreciate it all.