Friday, October 30, 2009

swine flu, pt. 4

leon is pretty much all better. my mom, however, is not. she has respiratory issues, so she went on Tamiflu as soon as she got a fever. my dad and i have had GI issues, along with really awful fatigue, but otherwise, no real flu symptoms.

i can't tell if i actually had the flu virus or whether it was psychosomatic. i'll get the vaccine once we return to cambridge mid-november.

as for that Tamiflu--

the tutti-frutti flavor must taste something awful because leon makes the hugest face. the first 3 doses were really hard to give him. he screamed, wailed, fat tears rolling down his cheek. i now have to hide the bottle and syringe because just looking at them makes him purse his lips.

the only way to feed him is by spoon. and even this can be a 10 minute process as my mom or dad attempts to distract and amuse him so that that little mouth will open just a crack.

i'm just glad that he's doing better, and that i didn't really get sick. i'm not taking my chances and will get the vaccine. who knows how long this flu season will last and whether it will become more vicious in the winter. i've definitely turned into a paranoid hypochondriac, though. i should stop googling 'asymptomatic H1N1 symptoms,' 'chest pain,' and 'death.' sometimes the internet is not a good thing.

8 months

leon is nearly walking.

phew. i need to take a breather just thinking about it.

he pulls up to stand on pretty much everything, now. he's a fearless baby. if you don't help him walk, he'll start yelling at you. often he'll let go of your hands, turn to face outward, and start walking. if you don't follow along, more scolding from leon.

the slithering has definitely switched to proper crawling in the past three weeks. most of the time he's so anxious to get wherever it is he want to go that he will crawl with one foot flat on the ground. this guy is in a hurry.

lots of talking, babbling, communicating, too. where did my little baby go?

highlights of the past 8 months that i miss:
marionette dancing while on his back
sitting quietly in the bathtub
blowing raspberries

sleep is slowly improving. leon now will sleep a 2.5 hour chunk.

breastfeeding continues. lots of snacking every 2-3 hours during the day, and then guzzling from 6 to midnight. he also eats 3 meals a day. i wanted to try baby led weaning, but he nearly choked on a bit of apple that he managed to bite off with his tiny barely-there bottom teeth.

when he laughs (this happens all the time now), you can see those teeth nubbins. they're adorable, just as adorable as his gummy smile.

leon had his first hair-trim this week. his bangs kept getting in his eyes, so i snipped them. i didn't do a great job because i was afraid of cutting him. i hope they grow out ok. i really do want to grow his hair out, but my parents scolded me.

lots of scolding nowadays, plenty to go around. leon refuses to stay put while i change his diaper. the prefolds are really difficult to use. we may have to move on to pocket diapers or AIOs. i use the imse vimse flushable liner since he now eats food. you can wash the re-use them if it's only pee, because otherwise they're quite expensive.

i am still pining after the bugaboo cameleon. i don't know what's wrong with me, but every time i see one, my heart twinges. i wish i had just gone with my gut instinct and bought one in the first place, even though we have two strollers for half the price of a cameleon. the only way i can justify buying one now is by definitely having a second baby in the next 3-4 years. phew.

Monday, October 26, 2009

swine flu, pt. 3

so leon was prescribed Tamiflu even though he hasn't had a fever for more than 24 hours and it's been more than the 48 hours recommended since the onset of symptoms. i called his pediatrician for a second opinion, and they suggested we give him the anti-viral medication. if he starts vomiting--a side effect--we should stop.

but the main concern right now is whether he'll develop a secondary bacterial infection, which Tamiflu won't prevent at this point. apparently one-third of the infant/small child deaths have been from this, not from H1N1. so a new fever of 101 or higher means another trip to the doctors.

also, the virus remains active in his nasal secretions for up to one week after the fever has subsided. so that means there's a good chance we'll get infected with the flu. the vaccine still isn't available here, so we're going to have to cross our fingers and hope for the best.

swine flu, pt. 2

leon's test came back POSITIVE. he doesn't have a fever, just nasal congestion as usual. he's playing with my wallet and having a grand time.

we're all going in to be tested this afternoon. i didn't feel too great on saturday, and i don't feel like i can't take super deep breaths, but hardly what you'd call 'labored breathing'. but that could just be a byproduct of my hypochondria. we'll see.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

swine flu, pt. 1

i noticed leon was a touch warm on friday morning. by the time we returned home, i checked his temperature. 102.8. he had also been dealing with a runny nose for the past week and a half (clear mucous). my mom called a pediatrician's office, and they suggested we drop by. i wasn't too worried because leon was playful and active as always. he was, however, napping more often that day, which is definitely out of the ordinary. i gave him 0.8 ml of tylenol and packed him in the car.

at the doctor's office, they checked his temperature along with other things. 99.6. the pediatrician then came into the room. the first thing out of her mouth was--there have been a lot of cases of swine flu with a high fever. my mom looked terrified. she asked whether a small fall two days ago had contributed to leon's fever. she also wondered whether he should be taking pedialyte for hydration. the pediatrician said no, which i could have told her without having to go to a doctor's office.

at this point, leon wasn't doing too bad except for his runny nose, sneezing, a low to medium fever, and a bit of coughing. all signs were pointing to a cold. the pediatrician, however, decided to bulldoze us into agreeing to two flu tests. one was in-house and would tell us whether or not he had influenza. the second, which had to be sent to a lab, would be more accurate and would determine whether he has H1N1. she said that of course the lab test would be more expensive, around $400, and would take 2-3 days. if the in-house test was positive, then the lab test would surely be positive. but if it were negative, there would still be a chance of a positive lab result. i didn't quite follow this logic, but i'm not a doctor or a logician.

i then asked what the point of a lab test would be if we needed to administer Tamiflu within 48 hours of symptoms. she said, well, we could still treat him, but yes, Tamiflu is more effective sooner rather than later. of course all i could think was, if he has swine flu, his condition is going to deteriorate before the 2-3 days are up.

my mom frowned and decided we should go ahead with both tests. i was more skeptical, but i also knew that leon's health insurance would cover everything except the $10 copay. i did, however, feel bad about contributing to the 'needless testing' that encumbers our health care system.

anyway, after two days of tylenol and many frustrating naps and sleepless nights, leon is doing much better. we're all going in next week for the H1N1 vaccine--if it's still available in our area. i'm not anti-vaccine, but i can't help but feel nervous. i'm not a fan of giving leon more shots than he needs, especially since he tends to have a bad reaction to them.

pt. 2--the vaccine and how it went.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

a tooth!

hat by bieq
wool pants by lucy's place

my parents were here recently and noticed that a bottom tooth is sprouting. considering all the trouble we've had with sleeping, i'm thankful that leon hasn't exhibited any of the classic teething symptoms.

on a side note, we are so excited for fall, especially because leon has inherited my special talent for hat-wearing.

Friday, October 2, 2009

a new kind of sleep

knit one-piece from egg by susan lazar (size 3-6 months)

so we gave up. we laid two twin-size foam mattresses on the floor of the small bedroom. i nurse him down every time he wakes up, but only after first trying to pat him back to sleep. it works 1 out of 10 times.

a typical day/night looks like this.
6 am-wake up, play with matthew, take a bath
8 am-nap with me in bed
9.30-10 am-wake up
noon-nap no. 2, alone
1 pm-wake up, go to the park or grocery store
3 pm-nap no. 3, alone
3.30-4 pm-wake up
5 pm-dinner
5.30 pm-bathtime
6 pm-bedtime with nursing
6.30-nursing 2-3 min.
7.30-pat-down to sleep
8.30-nursing 2-3 min.
11 pm-nursing, matthew and i join leon in bed
12.30 am-diaper change, nursing
3 am-nursing
5 am-nursing
6 am-motoring around the room, ready for fun

it isn't ideal, but it isn't terrible. sometimes he wakes up only 5 times, but that's rare. i'd like to think that because there's consistency in our response, he sleeps better. honestly, he could probably go an extra 30-40 min. late at night except i always creep in to check on him. the thing with him not sleeping long stretches is that when he does, i freak out and think that something's wrong. the longest he can go awake before having a meltdown is 2.5 hours, so frequent naps are the rule in this house.

and now for something not sleep related:
he sits, he crawls/slithers (at an astonishing speed), he pulls himself up on the couch and tries to stand while on his hands and knees (they're like push-ups)...he eats solids twice a day...and he 'talks'.

words include:
uh ma, uh ma (sounds pretty much like 'mother' in korean)
mem, mem, mem (i used to say this to him all the time as code for nursing)

and various sounds that can't be easily transcribed. i am delighted by my increasingly vocal baby. now if only we could get him to chunk up more. he's always motoring around the house, no wonder he burns all those calories off. it's no secret, i want more baby chub to kiss and squeeze.