Monday, April 13, 2009

March of Dimes

This is the speech I wrote and presented in my role as ambassador mom this year.


My story actually begins on October 2, 2003. The day I had my first ultrasound. That was when the very shocked technician informed me that
I was carrying triplets. She was excited because she had never seen triplets in an u/s before, and I was just trying not to faint. A few days later I met with my OB/GYN to learn what that actually meant. The reality was that this would be a very difficult pregnancy, and there was a very good chance they would be born premature. The question was, HOW premature.

The first step was a surgical procedure to hopefully keep me
from going into preterm labor. They stitched the bottom of my uterus closed to keep it from opening on its own with contractions. I had a very monitored pregnancy. I went through a lot to make sure these babies stayed in as long as possible because the longer they stayed inside, the better chance they had of being healthy.

I stayed at home on bedrest for months, and monitored my contractions at home with a belt that reported directly to a 24 hour a day nursing service, I also had to check my own blood pressure and report to the
nurses as well. I started blood pressure medicine early in the pregnancy.
Eventually, I was placed on an IV pump. I had to place a needle and tube into my leg and attach it to a pump that I wore 24 hours a day. When these precautions stopped working, I was hospitalized on February 25th. I was started on magnesium to stop the contractions while we waited for the steroid shots to develop their lungs. The magnesium was horrible and I had bad reactions to it. I was vomiting blood, incoherent, and practically paralyzed for the two days I was on it. But this was worth it to ensure that my babies were born as healthy as possible.

February 28th I had to stop taking the Magnesium because my
lungs had started to fill with fluid and I was having trouble breathing. This
was dropping the oxygen levels that were reaching the babies as well. The contractions began again, and it was decided that the babies would be born that morning by caesarian. The pregnancy was 33 weeks and 1 day along. Eric was born at 10:41 am weighing 3 lbs, 1 oz. I didn't see him as he was rushed by me on his way to the NICU, and he didn't cry. Joshua came next at 10:42 am weighing 3 lbs 14 oz. I only saw the top of his head as he was rushed by, and he didn't cry either. Hannah was born at 10:43 am weighing 4 lbs 3 oz. She cried very loudly and flailed her arms as she was rushed past me.

Eric started out on the ventilator for an hour, then moved to CPAP - which is a machine to help babies breathe when they are too weak to
breathe on their own, then he was given oxygen, Josh and Hannah were both started on the CPAP but weren't on it long before they moved to oxygen. All three were breathing room air within 24 hours. I didn't get to visit them in the NICU for eight hours, and I didn't get to hold them until the next morning. I wasn't allowed to hold Eric until three days later when I was leaving the hospital, because he couldn't maintain his temperature outside of the incubator. When I held him, I had to hold him in what's called a Kangaroo hold. Which means I held him skin to skin, and both of us were wrapped up in blankets. They came to check his temperature several times while I was holding him, and had to put him back in his bed when it dropped too low.

The trio didn't have many issues in the NICU, they all had their turn under the bili lights for jaundice, and Hannah wasn't very tolerant of the IVs. She kept pulling them out.

Hannah was the first to come home. She was home after a week and a half in the NICU. Joshua came home after 2 weeks in the NICU. Eric was another story. After his brother and sister left the NICU, he stopped eating, and the nurses had to resort to using the feeding tube again. After a few days of this, I brought Hannah and Josh back for a visit. He immediately started eating again and was home with us within a few days. The nurses thought he just missed his brother and sister.

The time a child spends in the NICU is a very emotional time for the parents. Leaving your babies behind when you leave the hospital is
heartbreaking. My ex-husband and I used to each have a photo album that we carried with us with pictures of them, so we would have something to look at when we missed them. I'm also sure that the nurses in the NICU were sick of hearing from me. I must have called every 20 minutes to check on them. But our family is lucky. If not for the March of Dimes, and the research they provide, my babies, these wonderful
children standing here with me, wouldn't be here today. That is why I walk every year. Walking every year, and raising money for this cause, and even serving as your ambassador family this year is a small favor in return for what I've gotten from the March of Dimes.

I hope you enjoyed the speech. It was hard to write, and even harder to give. Please, if you have any extra money, give to the March of Dimes. If you live in the Crawfordsville area, you can help me in another way. I am having a yard sale on Friday and Saturday, ALL proceeds are going to the March of Dimes. Someone donated money to me to cover the ads, so if you have any junk bring it to my house. If you need any junk, come to my house and get some! Or if you desire some lemonade, come over, because Morgan will be running a lemonade stand to raise her own money.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Catching up!

It's been a long time since I blogged. I've been busy. Between homework, work, family, and everything in between I haven't had much time.

Work is good. I love my coworkers, most of the kids are great, and every day, they do something to make me laugh my ass off. The only problem really is that I've spent a whole lot of time this winter sick. Which is especially suckish because my job has the crappiest insurance ever. But I guess I shouldn't complain, at lease I have insurance right now. Many people don't.

School is going great. I made up an excuse to fingerprint my kids this week and compare them to finger prints in the bathroom that I got using my fingerprinting powder. The good news is that I matched the finger prints, the bad news? It was either Eric, or Josh. There are minute differences in the fingerprints of identical twins, but you need sophisticated computer equipment to find the differences.

Adam pointed out while I was doing this little experiment that when the kids get older and REALLY start fucking up that they are soooo screwed. Hopefully I won't need to use my crime scene kit again to pin anything on them, and hopefully it will be a long time before Eric and Josh figure out that they are pretty much the same and you can't punish one if there's a chance it was the other.

The kids are good. My babies turned 5. That was a bittersweet moment for me. They actually go on to kindergarten next year. How the hell did that happen so fast?!

I've been spending a lot of time on facebook lately. There are a few applications there that are slightly addicting. I don't think it's better than myspace, I still like myspace better, but there are tons more people on facebook, so I just hang out there.

I think that's all I have time to say. I'm supposed to be doing homework. I was in the middle of a lesson on surveillance when I was inspired to write this blog. Due to the fact that not many people read here anymore, and there isn't a blogging feature on facebook, I just might go along with the idea that's been spinning in my head for a while and sign up for a blogging site.

Would you visit it?

Thanks for reading!


(2010 commentary)

I changed my mind after this post about Facebook, and decided I liked it a lot more. I guess I finally got around to signing up for this blog, huh! LOL)

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Hannah tells a story

Tonight we are sitting down to a lovely dinner, and I am listening to a converstation between the children while I eat. Hannah is in charge of this conversation, as she is most things.

They were drinking chocolate milk from the bottle with a bunny on it. (I'm sure you know what brand. When Hannah announces the following to the boys (Eric, Josh, and Braydon).

"You have to be careful when you drink this milk, because sometimes the bunny pops out of it."

I didn't want to let on yet that I was listening, so I turned away and hid my smile.

The boys, were understandably skeptical, insisting that bunnys didn't hop out of chocolate milk.

"It's true." Hannah insists. "When I stayed at grandma's house a bunny came out of my chocolate milk!"

The boys were impressed with her tale, and started looking in their milk.

I was impressed by the inventiveness, but I couldn't let the lie stand. So I joined the conversation.

"Hannah, are you telling stories?" I asked, hoping she would confess.

"No. It happened."

"Hannah, are you telling the truth?" She nods. I continue, "Hannah, you are saying that when you spent the night at grandma's house a bunny popped up out of your chocolate milk?"

She looks at me like I have two heads. "Yes! It really happened." she insists.

I look away for a moment, to gain my composure, because I am having a hell of a time keeping a straight face by this point. I turn back to Hannah, and continue.

"Hannah. It's not nice to tell lies, even when you are just being silly like that."

Hannah looks at me, and says quietly "I didn't know that."

"So is there anything you need to tell the boys?" I asked.

In the quietest voice she could possibly manage she says. "It didn't."

After the boys all yelling "What?" She said louder "A bunny didn't come out of my chocolate milk!"

The boys didn't really say anything, just went back to blowing bubbles in their own milk.

I love my kids!

Thanks for reading!


Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Missed Chances

You know those moments in life where you have a chance to say something to someone and for some reason or another you don't, then for the rest of the night, maybe even week, it eats at you? You spend the next days you wish for another chance encounter so that you can say all those things you planned. Today I had one of those moments.

I ran into my fifth grade teacher. I wasn't in a position to give her that speech I've always wanted to give, so it went unsaid. But here, in letter form is what I SHOULD have said.

Dear Mrs. Deacon,

You may not remember me, I had you as a teacher in the 5th grade. I'm sure you've run into many former students over the years, so you may or may not have heard this already. You were the worst teacher in the world. You verbally attacked a 10 year old girl on nearly a daily basis.

Some things that stand out:

"You are stupid."

"You are a vegetable."

"You will never amount to anything."

I can't remember everything you said to me during that school year of hell, but those were some of the highlights. I remember spending a lot of time by myself in the hallway. I remember you insisting I be tested for learning disabilities, despite the fact that no other teacher before or after you thought that.

Let me tell you a little something about that 10 year old girl. She had parents who were on the verge of divorcing. Parents who screamed at each other just about nightly, when one would either return from work, or the bar or wherever. These fights sometimes turned physical. One of my parents was a severe alcoholic. I would lay awake at night listening to them argue, hoping it wasn't one of those nights that turned physical. So I didn't sleep much.

You said I would never amount to anything, well, you know what? I'm a teacher now. I could NEVER EVER imagine talking to a child the way you did. You took a child with very little self esteem and took the last bits that she had.

I'm not sure what inspired you to become a teacher, but I along with many of your former students wish you had ignored it. I'm not even sure you like children.

To be fair, I'm sure I wasn't a picnic to deal with, I didn't have such a great life then, but when my students are acting out, I try to figure out the reason, and see if there's a way to help. I think that is the compassionate approach. Not name calling and heaping more troubles onto an already troubled child.

In closing, I hope that you are no longer a teacher. No other child should EVER be subjected to you as an authority figure and role model in their lives.



Thanks for reading my rant. Maybe now I'll stop obsessing.