Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Slightly Star Struck in the ER

I should mention that despite my complaints about a helicopter being a total waste of healthcare dollars it was a totally cool ride. As we took off I realized a bunch of people had been watching us from the ground - wonder what they were thinking. The launch site was right next the a big lake in town so it was beautiful.

Ned was very quite so I took the opportunity to enjoy the views since I figured I would never be in one again. I would have snapped a phone pic but I think the pilots would have thought I was a callous mom.

When we got into the ER at MGH (after coming in off the helipad) we were immediately surrounded by a billion people. Ned gets quiet when he's around lots of new people so he was actually calm (or was that the fentanyl they gave him in the ambulance?). It was exactly like Boston Med with someone making sure a doctor was leading the examination. In fact, Amanda Grabowski was right outside our room but not on our case. She was just as pretty and vivacious in person.

We are viewing a very long and grumpy recovery. How do you feed a kid who lies prone? Who can't ride in a car seat? Discipline him (can you?)? Brush his teeth? Bath him? This is the age of fierce independence and I am concerned about creating a dependence. And even before this injury it was "Mommy do it!" for everything. I'll be posting on these challenges in the future.

Finally, let me say that I am thankful that we moved to Boston. Both my sisters live far from family and friends and if they had to deal with this for their children I'm not sure they'd have the same support network available to us.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Do You Know What A Spica Cast Is? Mommy Esq Does.

Some days just go from bad to worse. Nanny April texted at 7 am to say she was sick - just what I needed after 5 straight days with my kids and a mountain of chores/errands to do. They were awful, naturally. I finally went upstairs to put in my contacts after Josephine went down for a nap.

Then I heard crying. I thought it was Penny who had been tantrumming on and off all morning but realized it was Ned. And his cry didn't sound quite right. I run downstairs and he is lying face down next to the dining room table and unable to get up. No idea what he did - but we did learn later that it was a rotating injury so his leg must have gotten caught in something.

It was no later than 8:45 am.

I scooped him up and realize his right leg/thigh seems "off" - sort of loose. And he was crying and clutching it and wouldn't let me go. It was obvious this was no "mommy kiss" type injury. After I held him and then settled him on the couch (he crying in pain with every movement) I called Husband to drive home from work so I could take Ned to the hospital. I threw on my clothes and abandoned the thought of dressing him (but did change his diaper which was still the nighttime one).

I considered that maybe it was his femur and we should call an ambulance. Just the thought of trying to get him in a car seat and to an ER was daunting. Husband came home and I called 911. They were there within minutes and I requested a local reputable hospital. The EMT suggested that if it was the femur (and he agreed it probably was) that I should go into Boston. Then he said we should medivak him out - as in a helicopter.

Poor Ned, an ambulance and helicopter ride in one day that he couldn't enjoy. I went with him in both. I also did slightly lie about my weight to the helicopter guys. I figure - margin of error, right?

It was a total waste of healthcare dollars. There was no traffic going into Boston and we ended up at MGH instead of Children's which is right off the main highway. Thank God we have my insurance - Husband's requires you to pay a % of everything (with a very, very high cap). I should have pushed for just the ambulance but I did what the EMTs recommended.

We spent some time in the ER and my friend Natalie drove over from Cambridge to stay with us. No food or drink for Ned meant no food or drink for me. He did have a femur break - a spiral one - but nothing was protruding so no surgery. But he needed a spica cast which has to be put on under general anesthesia - covering from his knees up to his chest - on both legs.

We waited in the ER from about 10 am until 3:30 pm when we went into a room. On the same floor Penny spent all that time in. Ned was taken down about 4:30 for his cast and I saw him again at 6 pm. He picked the cast color himself.

It is going to be a long 5 weeks (minimum) and I will probably have to push my maternity leave out further since it is pretty obvious that Nanny April can't do this solo. Which also probably means that we'll be paying her more overtime without my receiving any income. It is wonderful that I can probably do it but it is pricey - such is the economics of parenthood.

I would much rather me complaining to Husband over a glass of wine how Ned and Penny drove me crazy and how none of the three would nap then be researching (check out this site for some useful info) how to care for spica casts.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

After 6 Months The Trial Run of Three is Complete

Josephine is six months old today.

JoJo is the smiler in the family - her jaw seems to be unhinged as she flashes big grins at everyone in her world.

She spends a lot of time in the high chair. Not really because she is a great eater but because we have her join Ned and Penny for meals and snacks - and my goodness 3 meals and 2 snacks mean a lot of time for the Esq kids in their highchairs.

She sleeps through the night sometimes and is sometimes a decent napper. For all my crazy nap and sleep training of Ned and Penny I'm perfectly happy giving her a bottle whenever she wants one - at 2 am or 5 am - if that means we have a quiet household until about 7 am.

Josephine is working on sitting up but if you even think about putting her on her stomach she won't let you hear the end of it. Core muscles? Those are for other babies. We give her reflux meds twice a day that she hates but all is forgiven quickly. She rolls up onto her side but never over.

Those blue eyes seem to be here to stay - making her unique among the Esq kids. I see bits of Penny in her mouth but she looks mostly like her big brother Ned.

Penny happily brings Josephine toys and burp clothes and diapers and will occasionally kiss her.

Ned will also give her a kiss upon request but generally prefers to try to chase down our cat Scotia to kiss her.

We play fast and loose with Josie's naps and solid feeding schedules to accommodate Ned and Penny but she is pretty much willing to go with the flow.

We can't quite settle on a nickname. Husband calls her Josie and the kids call her Josie or JoJo and I call her JoJo.

Josephine doesn't laugh very much but she is easy to soothe. She doesn't even mind watching Curious George with her siblings.

I think she is going to fit in nicely with the rest of the Esqs.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy "Giving"

From the Esq. kids to you:

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Competing Over Guilt

I've been wondering lately if I am suffering from Mommy Guilt or from Mommy Competitiveness. Being on leave means I've had the chance to really connect with other moms, including stay at home moms.

My friend Nicole is an awesome cook and does such a great job providing healthy food for her kids. My friend K uses cloth diapers and volunteers for her church in addition to being a working mom (at my Big Firm) and my friend C handles her family's finances.

There are kid comparisons (and observations), spouse discussions, parenting techniques, etc. It is very useful and is a breeding ground for Mommy Guilt. Or is it really Mommy Competitiveness? I know I have a really horrible competitive streak in me - it was fostered in my childhood by my mom who encouraged my sisters and I to compete which was easy to do when we were in the same grade.

I think I need to find a mom niche for myself to tap down the Mommy Guilt/Competitiveness. It won't be homemade food or crafty projects. Any ideas for me? How do you keep Mommy Guilt/Competitiveness at bay when you are on playdates or talking to other moms?*

*And if you write that you don't ever feel competitive/guilty then I'm going to have to feel competitive/guilty about that!

Monday, November 15, 2010

'Tis the Season

Christmas is on my mind. Possibly because my mom has already finished her Christmas shopping although this year her wrapping won't be done until after Thanksgiving. My scheduled return to work date is before Christmas so I am trying to get a leg up on purchases before then (although I may be requesting to postpone my return until the Monday after Christmas).

How does your family work to save money during the holidays? In our family we are now just doing stocking presents for the children and we do a cousin swap so each cousin buys for another and no gifts are given by me to my siblings. I find Christmas gift giving frustrating because my kids don't need anything and I often find people don't look for savings when they find the (in their mind) perfect gift.

The other question I have is about your children giving gifts to each other. We don't really have a "mine" concept in our house right now. Ned and Penny play with each other's toys without labeling them. But we do label Josephine's toys as hers since the twins are always messing with them. So should I have Ned give Penny something? Will that create a "mine" complex?

And since I haven't posted in so long - here is a little peak into Ned and Penny enjoying Fall.