The Dreaded Flu

12/18/2013

Last week we got hit with the dreaded flu. First Jason, then me and Bee. Alianna made it through unscathed. Even Bee’s case worker got it. Bee had the vaccination so I guess it didn’t work. I’m sure no one wants to read a blog post about all of our fevers, coughing and moping around for a week so I’ll stop there. I just wanted to let you know why I haven’t posted anything in so long! We’re finally almost back to normal.

Here are some photos from the past week. Ali watched waaaaaaay too much TV but it was survival mode, man.

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HFM and Thank God for Good Men

08/22/2013

I’ll spare you all of the details and any photos, but last weekend I had hand, foot and mouth disease. I survived! It started out last Wednesday as a low fever (99.4-100.0) and a sore throat for two days and then developed into excruciating burning and itching hands and feet. The peak of pain was 24-36 hours. It’s been 8 days  since the initial fever started and my hands and feet are still irritated a little bit. Absolutely tolerable. Saturday thru Sunday afternoon was HELL … I’m pretty sure it’s the worst thing I’ve ever experienced. Walking through the house felt like walking over smoldering coals. Touching things, putting pressure on my hands, felt like touching flaming hot fiberglass. At the better times it felt like the pin-pricks of when your hand or foot falls asleep. I alternated ibuprofen and acetaminophen every few hours for days. Aloe vera gel would give me a couple minutes of relief. I thought I was going to lose my mind. Ali was not sleeping well at night or nap times (though she never got sick, thank God!). Jason was out of town…out of the country actually. My usual back-up is my mom and she was also out of town. My dad came to my rescue multiple times. This happened at 3:00 Sunday morning when Ali would not go to sleep and I had no fight left in me…all I could do was cry.

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My dad had been awoken by a nightmare and had been praying for about 10 minutes before I texted. After a very long night for all of us, my dad took Ali with him all day on Sunday so I could rest. I sent out a desperate plea for prayer on Instagram and Facebook and was thankful for the response from friends everywhere. I slept for a couple hours and watched movies most of the day to stay off my feet and try not to use my hands.

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My dad made us dinner Sunday evening and then I took Ali to the airport to pick Jason up. It was so good, SO GOOD, to have him home. He took over at bedtime and got Ali back into her proper sleep habits again. She was stuck in a rut for a couple days, fighting bedtime and waking in the middle of the night, maybe somehow related to me being sick and/or potty training. On Monday I started improving rapidly. I was able to tolerate water warm enough for a shower and I started getting the house back in order. Tuesday I was well enough to take Ali to her check up and to work at home the rest of the day. I still have faint red spots on my hands and feet and some itching and burning but it’s totally tolerable. I am so glad that’s over. That was an experience I would never wish on anyone! I am extremely grateful for the good men in my life: For my Dad who came over to help and encourage and give hugs (even in the middle of the night!), and to take care of his granddaughter all day on Sunday. And for my husband who didn’t get to come home to a clean house and a happy, energetic wife after being on tour in Europe for 3 weeks but who jumped right into Daddy mode taking care of Ali. He encouraged me out of my wallowing and motivated me to start moving wellness. The atmosphere in our home was restored as soon as he got back.

By Monday evening I was ready to get out and enjoy the beautiful weather. We took a family walk around Centennial Park.

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And I’m finally well enough to sample all the treats that Jason brought home from Sweden, Norway, Iceland and the Netherlands. The puffin is for Ali. The rest is for ME…OK, I guess I’ll share with Jason.

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Off Day(s)

05/23/2013

I woke up yesterday in a fog with my alarm clock and my back up alarm clock both going off. I (attempt to) get up at least an hour before everyone else so that I have time to shower, take the dog out, have a cup of tea, spend some time with the Lord…not necessarily in that order. However, because of sleeping through my alarms I was greeted bright and early by a little boy holding an empty sippy cup that he had just retrieved from the kitchen cabinet. I fumbled around and filled it up for him and told him a needed a few more minutes to rest. Five minutes later he returned to my doorway holding an oatmeal packet. Ok ok. I’m up. Jason is out on tour for a few days so it’s just me and the two kiddos. I managed to get them both up and ready and we got out of the house on time. I only forgot 5 things. I remembered 2 of the 5 before we were too far away so I swung back home for Buzz’s afternoon snack and the flowers I bought for his day care teacher.* (The other 3 things I forgot to do were: turn down the temperature on the thermostat, start the dishwasher and take a sweater to work… in case anyone cares.) My mom was watching Ali and texted me in the early afternoon that my baby girl had a fever of 103 in addition to her really snotty nose.

It was definitely an off day.

I realized as I was scrambling out of work early to pick up Buzz from day care so I could get home to my sick little girl that I have so much to be thankful for. Ali was in good hands—wonderful hands—with my mom who is not just an experience mom and grandma, but also a nurse. I’m thankful for Buzz’s day care—it’s been so good for all of us and I really appreciate that the state helps to provide this service for foster families. I’m thankful for my dad who picks me up every Wednesday and takes me out to lunch. I’m thankful for my husband who is encouraging and supportive even when we’re states apart for a few days. I’m thankful for an encouraging card that came in the mail from a friend I don’t see often enough. I’m thankful for the senior art director at my office who was willing to help me out of a sticky situation with a logo design at work—I really value her advice, skills and gracious encouragement. I’m thankful for my neighborhood MOMS club and for the sweet ladies who have been taking time out of their busy schedules to bring us meals three days a week. It has helped tremendously!

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This morning, Ali and I took a short walk in the park after dropping Buzz off at day care. She was feeling pretty yucky but by the time we got home, she started acting like her usual spunky self again. I’m hoping it was just a short-lived virus and we’re at the end of it now. I’m really thankful that I am able to work at home a couple days a week so I could be home with my sweet little bug today.

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*I bought flowers for Buzz’s day care teacher because… SHE DID HIS HAIR!!! I had jokingly asked her last week while she was fixing a little girl’s hair, “Oh! Can you do his hair too?” She said she would. On Monday she noticed that his hair hadn’t been braided over the weekend (as we had planned with two different appointments that didn’t work out.) She did it! I am over the moon grateful. We were at the point of 2-year-old vs. adult power struggle and he would not even let me touch it. I think she’s going to agree to style it for me on a regular basis and I’ll gladly pay her.

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