Sunday, August 30, 2009

Dear John Patrick

Dear John Patrick,

It is so hard to believe that you are seven months old already! It seems like only a short time ago your mommy and I were playing with each other in our clubhouse as kids, and now, my little sister is a mommy! Although it is hard for me to believe that she has a baby sometimes, I just want to let you know that you have a great mommy! She loves you so much! I probably shouldn't tell you this, but you've got her wrapped around your finger. But, I think you've pretty much figured that out by now.

I want you to know that I'm on to you! You give me one flash of that smile and my heart melts. When I haven't seen you in a few days, my heart literally aches for you. When you see me you just give me that big smile or sweet laugh and I make sure you have everything you need or want. I'm going to have to start putting my foot down before you get to be a big boy!

The two of us have a very special bond, and it started when you were just a few hours old. The night you were born, your mommy was very tired from all the hard work she did to have you and you woke up in the middle of the night and I picked you up and you slept on my chest until the nurses came to get you.

You were in the hospital for a week after you were born and I was there every single day. Mommy and I knew you would be okay, but we hated seeing you in the PICU. You know, I saw you every day for the entire first month of your life! I was so happy that mommy lives so close to my work and I was able to go and see you every day on my lunch break and after work. I wanted to help your mommy any way I could, and it was just a special bonus that I got to spend time with you!

I have been around lots of babies, and you are one of, if not the most, happy baby I have ever seen! From the time you wake up you are in a good mood. When you sleep over with Tio Larry and I, you always wake me up by laughing and talking to me. I never mind waking up early when you're here. Too bad you're not here everyday!

God knew exactly what He was doing when He gave you to us, and I thank Him every day for you!

I love you so!

Tia Tina

Tuesday, August 25, 2009


Finally, after many, many, many months (about 18 to be exact) I have an answer to my unexplainable pain! A gigantic 6 mm kidney stone. Now, if you've never had a kidney stone, you're probably thinking "6 mm doesn't sound very big", well, in the world of kidney stones one the size of a grain of sand can bring you to your knees. And I can tell you from experience that I thought I might die with this one!

If you read my previous post, you know that I had my nephew for a week while my sister went to Hawaii. As if to test my "parenting abilities", I started having pretty severe, constant pain the first night he came to stay with us. I did what I've been doing and just started downing some pills in hopes that the pain would go away. My only saving grace was that the baby was a perfect angel the whole week because I was in excrutiating pain EVERY day I had him. Unfortunately, Larry has been working a lot, and that week was getting home about the time I was putting the baby to bed, so he wasn't even there for me to ask for help.

One night I thought I was feeling better and decided to take John Patrick for a walk around the block, well thank God my neighbor, Hope, came with me because about half way around the block I thought I might pass out and I had to stop and sit on the curb until I could regain enough strength to get back home.

My week with the baby and the pain went on and I started becoming more than frustrated. I had developed what we believe to be an ulcer from taking too many Aleve and I hadn't been able to eat anything without causing stomach pain on top of all the other pain I was having.

Larry's cousin, Jesica, had planned to come for a visit the week after I had the baby and I was so excited! The day she came, July 21st, we went to eat at Los Cucos and I had to leave early because the baby was getting fussy as it was past his bed time. On the way home, the pain started coming...quickly. By the time I got him in the bathtub, I was finding it difficult to talk. I somehow managed to get him dressed, sang songs, said prayers and laid him down. By the time Larry and his mom got home, it was unbearable. I was on the floor writhing in pain even though I had already taken three of my "1 every 4-6 hours" pain pills within 45 minutes.

I really thought I might die. Or maybe I just wanted to. The pain pills seemed to do absolutely nothing. Its amazing what your mind does in instances like that, but I somehow remembered when our vet told me that if I choked Toby (our chihuaha) that the worst that would happen would be that he would pass out. Don't ask what context that was said in, because I don't remember. I was crying because I just wanted to go to sleep. I thought if I could just sleep I could wake up when the pain was gone, but I couldn't sleep because the pain was too intense. So, I asked Larry to choke me. Seriously. I just wanted to pass out, to not feel the pain anymore. He, of course (and thank God), said that he couldn't do that even after I offered to sign something saying I had asked him to do it and had his mom there as a witness. I'm pretty sure it was a that point that he and I decided that enough was enough and we went to the emergency room.

After about 30 minutes in the ER, I was finally given some morphine and taken back to do a CT Scan (the same test I had done just 8 days prior) and they found it. I was immediately admitted so that I could continue on the IV pain meds and anti-nausea medicine.

The stone ended up blocking my urine from coming out and caused my kidney to inflame which in turn caused even more pain and nausea, so my overnight stay turned into a few days and Larry and I had to debate whether or not I would have surgery to put a stint in. We decided against it because the stint would not help pass the stone, it would only help the urine flow, and after almost 24 hours of not being able to go, I was finally able to, thank God!

Let me just say that I was in the hospital from Tuesday night through Friday afternoon, and not very many people knew I was there. Larry neglected to tell even my closest friends and if it weren't for his mom and my mom knowing, I'm sure even my sister would never have found out. BUT - he was the best! He took care of me like I never expected or imagined. He was constantly on the nurses to do things for me or give me my pain meds and I have never seen someone fly across the room so quickly just to hold a bucket in front of my face and hold my hair back! He literally only went home to shower and feed the dogs. He was amazing.

We went back to the doctor Monday after I was let out and I had an x-ray done to see how far the stone had moved. Well, it hadn't budged and the doctor said if left alone, it could take months or longer to come out, so he wanted to do a lithotripsy (a procedure that uses ultrasound to break the stone into a powder) to take care of it.

I went in for the surgery that Wednesday, and after a couple of days of not feeling well due to the procedure, I have felt great ever since! I have had 25 pain free days in a row! I had just about forgotten how it felt to not be in pain!

So, at this point we're pretty sure it was the kidney stone all this time causing me the pain. I haven't gone this many days without taking pain pills in a LONG time.

I just want to say:

Jesica, I am SO sorry I was in the hospital your entire visit, thank you to everyone who visited me in the hospital and/or called to ask about me, for those of you who didn't even know I was in the hospital, I'm sorry, and to my husband - thank you so much for taking care of my every need, you never cease to amaze me and I love you more each and every day!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

My Week As A Mommy!

On Tuesday, July 14th, our nephew, John Patrick came to stay with us for a week while his mommy went to Hawaii. We had such a great time together! I must say that his mommy (my sister, Erika) has done a great job with him because he is a wonderful baby! I couldn't believe how easy he was!

I didn't take time off from work, so every morning I got up early so that I could take him to daycare and still make it to work on time. I was sure that he would wake me up every morning by the crack of dawn, so I wouldn't have any excuses for being late, but I was wrong! He went to sleep every night by 8:30pm and then woke up between 4 or 5 am, but if I just laid him right beside me, he would go right back to sleep until I woke him up to get him dressed. So, I was able to get up take a shower and get ready all before he woke up, and then I would just get him dressed, put him in the carseat and we were off. He doesn't even eat until he gets to the sitters!

He is such a happy baby! We really enjoyed eachother. We went for a walk around the neighborhood, we went to the mall just to walk around, we went out for lunch and dinner, we went to visit friends and family - and all the while I couldn't stop taking pictures and videos of him on my phone and uploading them to Facebook and sending them to his mommy. It was so much fun that I've told my sister that she can go out of town WHENEVER she wants!

I just love him so much and can't get enough of him. I'm sure you'll agree how cute he is!

My sweet, precious little nephew!