Thursday, May 28, 2009

Can you hear my huge sigh of relief?

I know you all check my blog anxiously and breathlessly awaiting updates on my latest gynecologic adventures (...or not), and you know I aim to please!

Soooooo, without further ado, I'm going to share the latest info with you. But don't worry - this update is not graphic and it's some GOOD news, for a change!

I went in for yet another repeat Pap a few weeks ago, and I just found out that it came back NORMAL!

Yes, I had my second normal Pap in a row. Which means that I am now back on an annual schedule again. :)

[Note: I just read through that link above and realized that I never posted a follow-up to it saying that the Pap came back normal, but it did. In case you didn't get that already. Okay. I'll shut up now.]

Say it with me: WOOHOOO!!!

I cannot tell you how much the past two years of abnormal Paps have bothered me. The simple fact that they were abnormal was troubling enough, particularly since the cervical and endometrial biopsies were all coming back normal and my doctor couldn't explain why the Paps were still abnormal. But coupled with the fact that we've been trying to conceive another baby throughout all of that (and longer), and other strange things were going on in my body, too, just added to my worry and anxiety over the whole thing. I mean, it just seemed like the oddities had to be connected somehow, and even though the biopsies were coming back okay I felt like I was always waiting for the other shoe to drop.

I know how bad that sounds - really, I do. I know it's NOT healthy to worry that much or to have that much anxiety over things you can't control, especially when all that worry and anxiety can have their own adverse effects on health. But if you've learned ANYTHING about me in the year and a half that I've been writing this blog, it's that I'm a born-and-bred, top-notch, Grade A worrier. I have a PhD in worrying.

I think it's genetic.

To know that I can finally remove this one heavy mantle of worry is a huge relief to me. That said, I am trying to worry less about the things I can't control. I've kind of realized that all I can do is pursue answers, because simply KNOWING what's going on is sometimes all I need to quiet my mind and move forward. That's true with the health scares, the fertility issues, and other matters. I just want answers so I can deal with the issues and keep moving forward.

Toward that end, I need to make a phone call to reschedule the HSG test that I had to cancel when I fell and hurt my foot a few months ago. The test won't interfere with my ongoing heart monitoring and now that I know that my Pap situation is resolved, I feel better about moving forward with the fertility testing. Who knows? Maybe I'll have more good news - and yet another mantle of worry to shed - by the end of the summer!

To all of you who read my blog and have said prayers or sent good thoughts my way, I can't thank you enough. I truly believe that there's a lot of power in prayer and well wishes, and I'm always grateful for them. We may not know each other "in real life", but we can still support one another. Thank you again. :)

Peace & love,
SW

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Six.

My sweet little babaloo, Super Boy, turned six years old on Saturday, May 23rd at precisely 12:45pm. I am now the mom of a giant, genius six-year-old boy.

I say he's a giant because the kid is already, like, 52 inches tall. I swear, he's grown six inches in the past year. At least that's how it seems given that the jeans that were a tad long on him last September are now better known as "manpris."

And I say he's a genius because - I kid you not - the boy assembled a 188-piece Bionicle and - AND - the huge Lego Power Miner's Crystal Sweeper all by himself in the past three days. These things are generally for kids ages 8-14 years old, and Super Boy assembled them in a matter of a few hours each. At just SIX years old.

Hell, it takes Super Man and me a few hours to assemble them - you'd think it would at least take the child a few days. Sheesh.



All this from a boy who was born a mere 8 pounds 10.5 ounces and 21 inches long just six short years ago. Of course, his head measurement was off the charts from the moment he made his arrival (hence the C-section, I might add), and Super Man always said it was because of all the brilliant grey matter he'd passed on to his only son...



In all seriousness, I look at this gorgeous, sweet, hilarious, intelligent, charismatic, sensitive, strong, tall child and cannot believe he's the same one I birthed what seems like only yesterday. I am overwhelmed with love and pride for this child, and I find myself easily picturing the man he will become - so much like the boy he is today, only... more.

He amazes me every single day, through something he says or does, or a particularly insightful observation or thoughtful, deep question, or a sweet little gesture that seems far beyond his years. I could not have asked for a more lovely, wonderful blessing in my entire life - that much I know for sure. My heart literally overflows.



And, thus, the happy occasion of Super Boy's sixth birthday was celebrated much over the holiday weekend. The big birthday party was held at a fabulous local movie theater where we were all treated to a special private showing of "Night at the Museum II." The party was a BIG hit - the kids AND the adults all enjoyed the movie and the venue. Two of the three sets of grandparents came to town for the big event, along with many friends. Super Boy said it was his best birthday party ever. That made me smile. :)

Here's to another year of having the pleasure and honor of being the Super Mom to such an amazing, wonderful and awesome little Super Boy.



XOXO
SW

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Totally wired.

So I saw the cardiologist/electrophysiologist at 1pm today. Very nice guy and well-reputed in his field and in the Milwaukee area. His nurse was also fantastic, and very friendly.

We started off with an EKG. This meant that I was hooked up to a bunch of different electrodes for a few minutes while all of my heart's electrical activity was monitored. That was all normal (thank God!), so then the doctor came in and we talked about what I've been experiencing. He checked my pulse, listened to my heart and lungs, and ultimately decided to put me on a portable monitoring device.

He chose what they refer to as a "loop" recorder, which I will have for the next month. The device consists of two wires/nodes - one of which is stuck on the upper right part of my chest and the other of which is below my left breast - and then the wires lead to a little circular box with a "record" button on it, and the box clips onto my belt.

I'm supposed to wear this thing pretty much every day all day, and I need to push the "record" button when I feel my heart flutter or race, or when I feel light-headed. This will record my heart's electrical activity 30 seconds retroactively, plus 30 seconds forward, to capture the electrical activity in my heart during an "episode." The box can store up to 4 episodes at a time, and when it's full, I need to call in to a special number, play the recording over the phone (sounds bizarre, I know!), and then my cardiologist will get a fax of the information. I can then erase the prior 4 recordings to reset the device to record another 4 episodes.

Since my "episodes" happen daily (and multiple times in a day, typically) I may end up being able to get rid of this thing sooner than a month, since the doctor just wants to see some examples of what I'm experiencing and I'm sure I'll have PLENTY of examples for him within a week or two.

Depending on what this shows, I may have to do a sort of stress test next, to see if he can induce the super fast heart-rate and/or near-fainting I've experienced those few times, but he's not sure if that'll be necessary yet. Personally, I'm hoping it WON'T be necessary, since this will involve me running. And with my foot still not at 100%, I'd hate to risk re-injuring my foot just to make myself pass out on a treadmill! :) Not my idea of a picnic, that's for sure!

Bottom line, Dr. C doesn't think that what I have is anything "bad," and he assured me I'm probably not going to die as a result of it (thank God again!), but he does want to find out what it is since it's obviously not normal.

So, for now, I'm all wired up and getting my trigger finger ready to press the button!

So Disorganized...

Ack. Ack! ACK!!!

I feel like a chicken with my head cut off this week.

It's not that I've had a lot of scheduled obligations for the week. Matter of fact, this week was actually quite light on those, for a change.

No, what's got my feathers ruffled is the next 3 days of life in the Super Family's household and all I've had to do this week (and didn't necessarily get to) to prepare for the next 3 days!

For starters, this afternoon (in less than 2 hours, actually) is my long-awaited appointment with my new cardiologist/electrophysiologist. Can you say "nervous?"

Say it again, just for good measure.

I'm just nervous, though - not actually scared. If what I have is the thing my internist thinks I have - SVT - it's not life-threatening. It's just a big pain in the ass. And, really, I need to get the situation under control, so I'm actually looking forward to (a) knowing what it is that's causing the funky heart fluttering and (b) figuring out the best way to treat it so I can get on with my normal activities without freaking out that I'm going to pass out AND so that I can continue to pursue getting pregnant. I'll update later today or sometime in the next few days with the outcome of today's appointment.

Today and tonight, I must clean my house. I HATE cleaning my house, but I love how it looks and feels when it's done. And with company coming (see below), it's a "must do" at this point. I also have to do laundry. Again. (Isn't that always the case?) Oh - and I have to make cupcakes for Super Boy to bring in to class, since he's celebrating his birthday with his classmates tomorrow (his actual 6th birthday is on Saturday).

Tomorrow, I'm helping out twice at Super Boy's school: In his classroom for a few hours in the morning, and then in the library in the early afternoon. I'm also picking up Super Girl in the later afternoon, and my in-laws are expected to arrive at some point tomorrow, as well.

Which reminds me, I hope I don't have to cook dinner tomorrow... Just sayin'.

Saturday is THE big day for Super Boy: His actual 6th birthday, and his birthday party! He's having his party at an awesome local movie theater, for a private showing of "Night at the Museum II" during which we'll enjoy pizza, popcorn, soda and Super Boy's Baskin-Robbins ice cream cake. MMmmm.

The icing on my proverbial cake, however, is that I'm coming down with a cold. A super friend and I babysat another super friend's twins on Sunday night, and both boys were sick with colds, so presumably the sweet little honeys were the source of my infection. No hard feelings though - they're too darn adorable and wonderful to hold a grudge against. ;) In any case, I'd be really happy if someone could figure out a way for me to remove my nose from my face for the next few days so it can get on with this cold while I get through all the stuff I've got to get done!

I love this time of year, especially Super Boy's birthday. But it's always a little bittersweet. I still remember the feel of his big bowling ball body rolling around inside my belly like it was just yesterday, and that sensory memory simply doesn't jive with the tall, sturdy, beautiful boy with a headful of gorgeous curls who stands waist-high beside me today, plays soccer and shoots baskets and swims like a fish, calls girls "hot," and has friends sleep over. I find myself asking over and over again WHERE did my baby go???

Now, excuse me while I go find my head and get back to the regularly scheduled programming...

Monday, May 18, 2009

First Sleepover

Super Boy is growing up sooooo fast...

He had his first friend sleepover at our house this past Saturday night, one of his best friends, who happens to be the son of my best friend.

Super Boy was so excited about it, he could hardly wait for his friend to arrive. He kept saying, "Will he be here in 10 minutes, Mom?" and "Has it been 10 minutes yet?" The excitement was palpable.

When at last his Super Friend arrived, with jammies on and teeth brushed, the boys scrambled up to the guest room/playroom, got their sleeping bags spread out on the floor, and proceeded to play cowboys. That petered out in about 15 minutes, and then they popped in "Star Wars: The Clone Wars" and got settled in to watch the epic struggle between good and evil.

Super Man and I spent the evening downstairs in the living room catching up on the past few episodes - and season finale - of LOST (WOW!), and had to resist the urge to keep running upstairs to check on the boys. Shortly after 9pm, we heard their little feet on the stairs: They wanted a snack. Two granola bars and glasses of water later, they sprinted back upstairs to finish their movie.

When I sent Super Man up 20 minutes later to check on the boys, they were fast asleep. :)

I wasn't sure how Super Boy would do as far as staying in the play room the whole night. See, at a hair away from 6 years old, the boy still - STILL - crawls into bed with us during the night more often than not. I'm proud to say that he didn't budge from his sleeping bag the entire night. He was very proud of himself when I pointed that out!

The boys awoke early the next day, 6:45. I know this because Super Boy yelled from the other end of the house: "MOM? I'M DONE WITH MY SLEEPING BAG!"

I had been in a dead sleep. I bolted upright and croaked, "WHAT??"

"I'M DONE WITH MY SLEEPING BAG! CAN YOU COME GET IT?"

"NO! LEAVE IT THERE OR BRING IT IN HERE! MOM'S STILL SLEEPING!" (Yeah, right.)

[thump, thump, thump, thump, thump] Super Boy bolted down the hall to our bedroom and dumped his sleeping bag on my bed. "We're awake now, Mom, so I don't need my sleeping bag now."

"OK, honey. But, listen: Mommy still wants to sleep. So you two either need to be really quiet in the back room, or you need to go down to the living room. Daddy's downstairs already," I groaned, trying to settle back into my warm, fluffy pillow and will my body back to sleep.

"We're hungry. Can you get us breakfast?"

"No - Daddy can get you breakfast. Go. Shoo. Mom's sleeping." (I wish.)

Having completely woken up by then, sleep was no longer an option. Instead, I lay in bed listening to the boys' whispered conversation - and giggles - down the hall. This went on for a good 20 minutes. I smiled. A lot.

When the boys finally went downstairs, I gave up trying to sleep and went downstairs to make breakfast. Cinnamon rolls and bacon, per request. MMMMmmmm.

Super Boy's friend was picked up around 9:15. Super Boy wanted to go to their house for a sleepover that night.

Sunday night. A school night. :)

Methinks my almost-6-year-old is hooked on this sleepover business!

Heaven help us. And the parents of his friends... ;)

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

You're a Super Star, That's What You Are...

I'm talking about Super Boy here. My little man is "Super Star of the Week" in his class this week, and he couldn't be more excited about it if it came with a lifetime supply of Hubba Bubba and every Lego Bionicle character ever made.

Well, I take that back. He probably would be more excited if it came with those things. But I digress.

What does it mean to be "Super Star of the Week" in Senior Kindergarten?

It means you get to sit in a cool little director's chair that says "Super Star" on the back while all the other kids have to sit on the carpet during carpet time.

It also means that you get to be second in line (behind that day's "Leader of the Day") whenever the class leaves the classroom.

You get to make a big poster with pictures of and information about yourself and your life to bring to class, where it hangs in a special place on the wall. You then get to show it to your classmates and tell them all about it. (Super Boy showed zero interest in making this with me, so I made it myself. It turned out pretty well, if I may say so myself.)

Additionally, it means that you can have a parent come in and read a story. I went in this afternoon after Super Boy picked out the books "Go Away Big Green Monster" and "Parts." He read the first one to the class - much to my and his wonderful teacher's mutual delight! - and I read the second one. The kids got a big kick out of both of them. It was very cute.

The Super Star can invite his or her parent(s) to come in to eat lunch with them, which I also did today. It was fascinating getting an up-close-and-personal glimpse at the lunch table conversations and antics of 5- & 6-year old kids. It also clued me in to what I already suspected was happening with regard Super Boy and his cold lunches: He eats the goodies first and saves the sandwich for last. The little stinker. At least he managed to eat EVERYTHING in his lunch today; that's not always the case.

And the Super Star can also bring in a treat, which Super Boy will be doing tomorrow. We're going to make brownies this afternoon - yum!

The teacher tries to tie in each child's "Super Star" week with their birthday, but in this case, there were several kids with May birthdays, so Super Boy was this week's "Super Star" even though his birthday isn't until the 23rd. He doesn't really care, though. It means he gets to bring in special treats two weeks in a row. (The kid is a lot of things, but stupid isn't one of 'em!)

My little Super Boy is always a Super Star in my book. But it sure is fun to see him enjoy this special week of recognition and celebration at school with his teacher and classmates.

Shine on, baby!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

An Update

I posted last week about having my first echocardiogram, and now I'm here to tell you the results.

Are you ready?

Are you sure?

Ok. Drumroll please...

drdrdrdrdrdrdrdrdrdrdrdrdrdrdrdrdrdr.....

The echo came back totally normal.

Very anticlimactic, yes?

This is ultimately good news, because I think they can now rule out a structural or mechanical problem with my heart, since the echo looked at the heart structures and evaluated the flow of blood through the chambers, etc. Unfortunately, it doesn't tell us why I'm having the fluttering heartbeats or the rare near-fainting episodes.

For that reason, and because my internist believes this is an electrical impulse problem in my heart muscle, she wants me to see a cardiologist/electrophysiologist for further evaluation. I've got an appointment with a very well-reputed doctor of this variety on May 21st. I'll be sure to post another update after I've seen him.

In any case, it doesn't appear that I'll be dropping dead from heart failure any moment now. This may disappoint some of you, but hopefully the rest of you are happy to hear it. :)

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Kudos to Teachers!!

This week happens to be Teacher Appreciation Week at Super Boy's school and, I've gotta say, I think our PTO does a really nice job of recognizing the hard-working, caring and dedicated teachers and staff.

Super Boy has only been at the school for two years, and I've found this special week to be a ton of fun to be a part of both years. The fabulous PTO parents organize breakfasts and lunches for the entire staff each day of the week. I'm not talking about doing the same bland, boring thing each day either - they have a varied and really quite nice menu for each day. For lunch tomorrow, they asked parents to select a teacher or staff member for whom to bring in a special bag lunch, which I thought was a really nice touch. They also sent home lovely little cards on which the kids could write their own notes to their teacher and another staff member to say why they appreciate them, and asked the kids to bring in a special treat for their teachers on Friday.

As a co-room parent, I've been able to help specifically recognize my son's teachers by planning special time in class to present the teacher with gifts from all the students and parents, and to bring in a treat. This year, we did our special celebration on Monday morning, and Super Boy's teacher was so touched and appreciative.

I feel so grateful and blessed that my son has had two great teachers to start off his academic career on the best possible foot.

His K4 teacher last year was just what the doctor ordered for introducing young kids to the school experience. I was amazed at her ability to effectively and enjoyably keep the attention of nearly 20 four- and five-year olds and teach them about all sorts of amazing things for 3.5 hours every day - and particularly in her ability to do that with not one but TWO classes, morning and afternoon! Clearly that required a lot of organization and good time-management, and she was great at that. One of the things I loved best about her was her passion for art, and the way she instilled that in the kids both by teaching them about the great masters and then having them create their own artwork in the style of each of the masters, to experiment with different forms and textures. I will always treasure the artwork Super Boy created last year, and I thank his K4 teacher for making that such an interesting and appealing subject for Super Boy.

Super Boy's K5 teacher this year is the epitome of the perfect senior kindergarten teacher. She is so incredibly sweet, caring and kind - to students and parents alike - that it's a complete pleasure to help out in her class. She's very organized and has a way of holding her students' attention without raising her voice. I LOVE that she has been able to teach Super Boy to read and write at 5-years-old, too; I'm just so excited for HIM that he's developed those skills! Super Boy adores her, and I know she really enjoys having him in class, too. And I've so enjoyed getting to know her that I sincerely hope we will continue our friendly relationship long after Super Boy has left her class.

In a nutshell, it's been a pleasure to celebrate my son's teachers and the other school staff members who have contributed in ways great and small to his thus far fantastic school experience.

I think it says a lot when your child looks forward to going to school each day, and misses being at school during the various breaks (or even just on the days when he MUST stay home because he's sicker than a dog)! The sweetest instance of this happening was when he cried toward the end of this past Winter Break because he missed his teacher and classmates terribly much after only two weeks off school. I don't known how he'll survive this Summer Vacation!

As much as I love celebrating Teacher Appreciation Week, this time of year admittedly makes me a teeny bit nostalgic and sad: Not only does it mark another impending birthday for my little man - he'll turn 6 in just three short weeks - but it marks another school year coming to an imminent close. And I have a really hard time saying goodbyes.

The thought of Super Boy leaving his K5 teacher's class makes me sad because we've both had so much fun in his class this year. Thankfully, I know that he will have yet another wonderful teacher next year, and I know that he - and I - will both look forward to forging another new relationship with that teacher.

To all the teachers out there, THANK YOU for teaching our children and for doing so with passion, compassion and enthusiasm!

Peace & love,
Super Woman