Sunday, July 1, 2012

My heart has been full of love and gratitude today, for my family, for my life, for my friends, and the opportunities we have to grow. This comes during a time of great stress and uncertainty regarding where our family is to go, what we are to do, and how we are going to survive the aftermath of school. In just two and a half weeks, Taylor graduates and becomes the proud owner of a very hard earned Bachelor's degree. He has not been deterred from accomplishing his goals during all 4 years, and we have tried hard to support him and help him feel free to do what he must to succeed.

Now we are full of uncertainty, and no real firm feelings as to what we should do and where we should go, but I feel blessed to have struggled through these past 4 years with my husband and children. We have done this together, and Taylor is honored by the school for his accomplishments. I feel honored as well that he has taken this opportunity and turned it into something we can all be proud of. He is graduating with a 3.96 GPA, and has received the Newel K. Whitney award. His GPA will most likely get him the Summa Cum Laude honor, but we haven't heard the official word on that yet.

The last 4 years have been the hardest I think I've ever lived. We struggled through intense stress on so many fronts and the level of emotions at times were at depths I've never experienced before. But never at any time did we question our decision for Taylor to get his degree, and never did we consider quitting. To have made it through what we did, with not only a degree, but with such high honors, has made the struggle worth it. This is not only an accomplishment for Taylor, but for our whole family.

My gratitude goes to my Father in Heaven who surely sustained us all. But I'm actually kinda sad that it's over. It has been a wild ride, and we have come to love this place, the people here, and I will really miss it. This has become home to me and I had daydreams about my children growing up surrounded by the people I have come to know and love. I realize that we will be able to call another place home and good people will be there as well, I just wish I could keep everyone with me as we move on.

I am positive that the Lord will continue to sustain us as we strive to do the right thing and while we struggle through our next chapter of life. The things we lived through these last 4 years has given us experience in shouldering our burdens with a righteous goal in mind, and I know that the blessings and strength we have gained from it will keep our feet on the path of hope and faith.

Thank you to all who have supported us, whether through monetary means, through prayer, or by just being our friends. Much love to you all.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Trials of Motherhood

Jeriah and I used to be the best of buds. Then Lukas came along and we kinda got a little distanced from each other, but we were still happy together. Then he turned 4 and I felt like I didn't know him at all anymore. What happened to my sweet happy boy who loved me? The boy who didn't get angry at the slightest thing? I felt like he was more mature at 1 than he was at 4.

This feeling hasn't really gone away over the past 2 1/2 years. It has been a real struggle to know how to deal with his intense angry fits, the seeming lack of communication and empathy for others, and his imagination that knows no bounds, even in reality.

Our relationship has been consistently on rocky ground and the way we have treated each other has been shameful at times. For the longest time I blamed him. If he just wouldn't get so angry, then I wouldn't say the things I did. If he wouldn't throw and hit and scream, then I wouldn't feel the need to yell at him. If...then statements plagued me.

I wanted a change. I needed a change. I have had to humble myself, realize that I am at fault here, and try to pinpoint where I am most lacking in my mothering of him. I still haven't gotten the full truth behind it all, but a few things have come to light that have caused me to seriously reconsider how I parent.

I love structure when it comes to rules, discipline, bedtimes, and mealtimes. When my kids are babies, it's simple, easy, and satisfying to structure our lives and see the happiness that comes from it. My babies were happy. I was happy. We were all thriving.

Now Jeriah is 6 and he's not a baby anymore. I can't control everything in his life anymore. Bedtimes and mealtimes are so ingrained in us that there is never any contest to accomplish them, but everything else is basically out the window. Rules are constantly questioned. Arguments abound, most of them completely based in his imaginary world. Feelings of entitlement require that everything else abide by his whims.

Mother's previously firmly established authority is not firmly established anymore. And I have spent the past two years panicking about it. At my lowest points I have questioned my own validity as a mother, wondered if I am even capable of doing this job, and even had the gall to think that maybe he would be better off with a different mother.

Control instead of love was what I was showing him. I realized that I was the main contributor to his anger, as he was trying to tell me all along by screaming at me "You are making me upset!" I ruled by fear and therefore I needed to keep everything in a nice tight box so I knew what to expect at all times.

I realized that I have this sweet, highly intelligent, loving child who just needed me to let go a little more. I needed to relax and let him be who he is. If he breaks ten things that day in the midst of some project, pretend play, or angry fit, then it's OK. If he turns on the hose without asking and gets half the backyard  and himself muddy, and then comes inside tracking mud, it's OK. If he doesn't listen to me for an agonizing 15 minutes when I tell him to get his pajamas on, it's OK. Everything is just OK. We can deal with it.

The main things I've learned through this:

  • Love him. Even when he's angry and spouting hurtful things, love him. Be kind. Remind him that you are being kind and would like him to be kind back, but don't require it. (When I do this very consistently for about three days, his attitude changes considerably on the fourth day.)
  • If he tells you to leave him alone, respect that.
  • Show him random acts of love throughout the day.
  • Come up with new projects that he would enjoy and do them with him. Example: He's really into insects right now, so I have helped him catch quite a number of bugs to keep. We even caught a painted lady butterfly, did research about that particular butterfly, and then let it go the next day. He was thrilled.
  • Really try to understand him by asking how he feels and why he feels that way. Don't put your two cents in and try to teach him anything during those times. Let him just feel his feelings and talk about them.
  • And most important of all, stay close to the Lord and do the things that you know bring you lasting peace. This has always helped me to keep my perspective where it's supposed to be and understand what my children truly need from me. And feeling a deep sense of peace helps me not panic when I feel like things are out of my control.
I just had a thought. I have a little boy who is 1 1/2 years old, and he does not fit into very many of my structures. I have had to put some things behind me that worked so well with my other two, just to keep myself sane. For instance, Jesse has learned to climb out of his crib already (which was traumatic to me in and of itself), and we had no choice but to put him in a big boy bed. I spent four days desperately trying to teach him to stay in bed when he's put there, using the same method that worked so well with the others, but he never got it. Or he did get it but just didn't care enough to stay where he was supposed to.

Taylor suggested that we just let him get out of bed and play in his room until he went back to bed or cried. Jesse can't open doors yet so him coming out of his room wasn't an issue yet, but I had a really hard time with giving him free rein in his room. I knew it was probably the best thing to do right now, but I was having a really hard time coming to terms with that other side of me that wants things to be predictable and controllable. My point here is that this little boy, who has happily defied all my attempts at controlling his actions from a very early age, is helping me learn to let go.

Maybe Jesse came here to our family at this time to help me learn to let things be as they are and stop trying to fit them into some ideal I have in my mind.

I have tried hard to employ all those points I listed above during my interactions with Jeriah, and we have been having a great time together for the past few days. He has dealt with hard situations with ease, and what anger he has shown has obviously been tempered. He has told me multiple times a day that he loves me, and will come sit on my lap and cuddle. What has been most surprising is he has listened to me when I have tried to correct him.

It's been like old times again and my heart is full to overflowing.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Teton Dam Half Marathon

I showed up with my friend, Amanda, about 15 mins before start time at 7:30. We got our packets the night before, so this was plenty of time to get in our place before someone yelled, "GO!" It was kinda chilly, but not too bad. About 50 degrees. And the sun was out so that made the 50 degrees feel better. I was hungry since I had woken up at 6am to have a bowl of cereal, and I was shaking. I was so nervous and I still doubted if I could finish.

Amanda and I got in the middle of the throng of people, someone yelled, "GO!" and we took off. About ten steps into it, Amanda said "Good luck!" and left me behind. In fact, the whole pack of half marathoners left me behind. I was alone not even a mile into the race.

Starting out was really hard. Everything hurt for the first two miles or so, but it was relatively flat so I pushed myself. I told myself I'd walk at the mile markers, so at each mile marker I'd walk until nothing hurt anymore. I did this for the first 5 miles.

At 5 miles, there was an aid station that had Gatorade, water, orange slices, and bananas. I ate two orange slices, and drank two paper cups of Gatorade. I was really hungry by that point and that snack got me through the rest of the race. While I was at that aid station, I saw the road stretching in front of me, and it was all uphill for as far as I could see. I was dreading it.

I began my ascent since I couldn't do anything else by that point. The wind. Wow. The WIND! It was a steady 10-15mph wind in my face during that entire stretch of road, all the way up that 3 mile hill. I realized that I could walk up that road faster than I could run it, so I walked almost the whole thing. But even just walking, that wind kicked my butt. It stole my breath, and tried to push me back. It dried me out and left a stiff film of salt on my face. I prayed and asked that either the wind lessen, or I be given more strength to make it all the way. The thing that worried me the most was my breathing. I was having a hard time breathing in the face of the wind and I worried that it would affect the rest of the race.

I stopped at the next aid station for just a cup of Gatorade, kept pushing on, and then a marathon runner passed me. He wasn't the first marathon runner to pass me, but he was the only one who stopped and peed in front of me like there was nothing to it. What puzzled me the most though was he had just passed a port-a-potty a few feet back and he would rather pee in public, in the wind, in front of a girl, than use a toilet. OK. Whatever floats your boat I guess.

I finally made it to the top of that torturous road, and ran down the next hill gratefully. Stopped at the next aid station, and kept running. Just some rolling hills left, and then downhill for the last two miles. The wind was now at my side or my back and that made things a lot easier. But as I feared, I was having a difficult time keeping my lungs in check. I had to take more walk breaks than I wanted to, but I was going to finish and that's all that mattered.

One final hill, and my husband and little boys were there to cheer me on! My spirits soared when I saw them. Jeriah and Lukas ran up the hill with me, gave me hugs and said "Good job Mommy!" Wow! I can't even express how that cheered me up and gave me the umpf to finish this race at my best. I was going to run the rest of the way! I only had two miles left and it was all downhill. I was almost done!

So I ran, but had to take at least one more walk break, even downhill. The course goes right past my house, and when I got on my street, my neighbor, Charlotte, ran out of her front door, cheering me on and joined me barefoot to run the final 3/4 of a mile with me! She chattered and cheered, and kept me going. She ran ahead to the finish line at the last corner so I could run the rest of the way myself. Only one block left and then I could stop!

That last block felt like it dragged on forever! I was so tired that I was barely running and I was having a hard time breathing again. But I ran all the way through the finish! Charlotte was there jumping up and down, screaming for me, and I knew my family and Amanda were around somewhere close by. I was DONE! I walked through the volunteers handing out medals and water bottles, went over to a tree, and bent over to catch my breath and cry a little in private.

That's when it hit. I was so afraid it would hit me out on the course, and when it didn't, I thought I was safe.

I couldn't breath in. At all. I was trying so desperately to get some air but my chest was caving in with each attempt instead. I was hit so suddenly with a massive asthma attack that I had no time to calm myself down before it got bad, and I panicked. Within seconds I was dizzy and I wanted to pass out. I feel fortunate that Charlotte was close by because she ran over to the paramedics tent (which just happened to be only a few feet away) to get some help. Then she ran to find my family.

I was sat on a cot, some oxygen was stuck in my nose at full blast, and they prepared the albuterol. Amanda arrived to hold me upright while I swayed, and Charlotte went behind me to be sure I didn't fall backwards. With all the extra oxygen, the medicine, the coaching by the medical staff, and the support of my friends, I eventually made it past the dangerous part. I could breathe again. I had side effects from that asthma attack for a few hours afterwards, but all the tightness and coughing finally went away.

Then I could finally come to terms with the fact that I had stayed in constant forward motion for 13.1 miles! I did it! I ran this half marathon in 3 hours and 7 minutes. I did something I didn't think I could. At the starting line I was still doubting myself, but...


Sunday, June 10, 2012

The reason for my half marathon

For the past 8 months I ran, and ran, and ran. I worked out. I tried to eat better. Over the last 8 months, I lost 20 lbs, and gained the ability to run much longer than I ever thought was possible for me.

I was training for a half marathon.

I may have mentioned before that I have exercise-induced asthma. As the name implies, the asthma doesn't kick in until the lungs are being strained through physical exertion. I don't have any other asthma symptoms at any other time. I was diagnosed with it in middle school and it has kept me from doing all kinds of fun sports for fear of triggering an attack. Running and prolonged swimming have been the two things I had convinced myself I'd never be able to do, because they seemed to always cause me problems. I do not have inhalers to control the asthma because the inhalers actually made it worse. I quit taking them and learned to control my environment. I have lived with this fear of my asthma for about 20 years.

Last year, I went to a Relief Society meeting about walking and running. A man, who is apparently famous in this area (and of course I can't remember his name), came and talked with us about walking and running techniques, types of shoes, nutrition, etc. It was a fantastic meeting and I came away feeling like I was looking into a world I never knew was there. I realized I had been running wrong all along, and I began to see how running could be a reality for me. So, I began to walk and add a little running here and there. Before I knew it, I was running a whole mile! I had taken that step onto this new world of exercise.

I have a good friend who trained for a half marathon last year. I babysat for her while she went on her runs and I was always impressed at how dedicated she was. I really enjoy participating in triathlons (on a relay team), but watching her as she trained and became a considerably better runner inspired me.

That running man and my friend helped to create a question in my head I was itching to get answered. I had already been running a little (I was up to 1.5 miles) and I wanted to know how far I could push myself. How much could I handle?

13 miles is so much more than I could ever imagine doing, which is why I wanted to try for it. I honestly couldn't see myself going that far. It was way beyond what I thought I was capable of and if I could complete 13 miles, even with asthma, I could see myself being a completely changed woman. The woman on the other side would know that she is strong enough to accomplish anything, in any part of her life. The woman on the other side would be closer to who she is than at any other time in her life. She would understand things about herself that she never had before. That is why I wanted to run a half marathon.

I wanted to find that part of myself I felt had gotten lost.

So, in a crazy burst of courage, I signed up for my own half marathon. Only later did people tell me that this particular race had a really hard course, and I was brave for doing this as my first.

I ran and ran. I trained and ate better. I lost a little weight here and there. When I hit 3 miles of continuous running, I felt like a huge barrier had been broken. I was no longer the timid girl who hid behind the asthma excuse. I began to believe that 13 miles was possible.

Sometimes, training was really hard. I fought with not wanting to go workout, or go running. My motivation would surge, and then wane. It was like going over rolling hills, and going up the next hill always made me want to quit. I wanted to be comfortable, and just go back to my comfortable life. But I pushed on and upward, and always made it through.

After months of training, the day came, and I did NOT feel ready. My longest run was 9.5 miles (I am using the word "run" at this point pretty loosely. I walked some because I still could not ignore the asthma issue) and I could barely crawl home after that one. I didn't feel that I trained hard enough, I could have eaten better, I should have been more consistent, etc.

One reason I didn't feel ready was the course itself. I finally drove the course a few days before the race, and realized that there is a solid 1 mile uphill, followed by another 2 miles of a little flat road interchanged with more hills. Kind of like rolling hills, except the downhill is replaced by a flat road. So, that equals 3 miles of going basically uphill. I was pretty nervous and I even contemplated switching over to the 10k race instead.

I showed up on race day, ready or not, to do my 13.1 miles and that, in itself, was an accomplishment.

Monday, May 14, 2012

The Colon - Past, Present, and Future

*Warning: If you don't like to hear about the functions of the digestive tract, I advise you to move on to whatever else you were going to do today.*

Here is the back story of why we have sent Lukas to SLC to see a GI specialist. Last year, we began to notice that Lukas would vomit randomly and complain that his tummy hurt. It gradually picked up frequency until he was vomiting almost once a week and complaining more often. I finally took him in to the doctor after months of trying different things to see if we could pinpoint what is causing this. They did a general blood allergy panel, which came back normal. Then, our family had a very small stomach virus. It was about 24 hours, and very minor. Pretty much just an upset stomach. When it was Lukas's turn to get it, it wasn't just a 24 hour virus. Lukas got violently ill for an entire month. We had a month of watching Lukas deteriorate slowly of what seemed like a violent stomach virus. Vomiting, diarrhea, pain, the works. No fever though. He was permanently set up in the living room with a throw up bowl and one of us with him all the time. If we went anywhere, we took the vomit bowl with us.

He'd vomit almost every single night, multiple times a night. I watched his fat stores melt away, and his tummy become distended and bloated. I took him to the doctor multiple times, and they just took tests that all came back normal. I was blown off again and again about sending Lukas to a specialist. The only thing that kept him out of the hospital was he would not stop drinking. He was always thirsty, and even though he'd eventually vomit most of what he drank that day, at least he was keeping hydrated. I was convinced this had nothing to do with a stomach virus. Maybe the little virus had set him off, but there was something much bigger going on.

When the sickness finally came to an end and he began to eat again, his tummy seemed to feel better and better over time. Even though his tummy appeared to feel better, I still felt that something was wrong. He would still complain of having a hurt tummy, and he wouldn't eat sometimes, but he wasn't vomiting anymore. So later, when Lukas vomited for a day and showed signs of being sick, I went to a different doctor terrified that we were going to have another bad spell (we didn't), and cried, begging to get a referral. I finally got one. What we went through last year with Lukas I never want to go through again, so if I could find out what is going on and treat it, then maybe we have a good chance of keeping him well.

OK. Now that you know the past, here is the present and the known future regarding my little boy.

I wasn't very thorough about the what the colonoscopy revealed in my earlier post. Yes, he has inflammation, a stretched out colon that has created extra loops, and swollen lymph nodes. What I didn't talk about was the bacteria overgrowth and the chronic gastritis that showed up in the biopsies. Mainly because I had no idea what they meant.

After finding out what the colonoscopy and endoscopy revealed, I sat on that information for a while and wrote down the questions that came to me. I finally figured I had enough questions so I called the doctor back to get the answers to my page long list. Among them were questions about what bacteria overgrowth and gastritis mean exactly and what symptoms would show up because of those conditions. I also asked if his colon would ever go back to normal, if the inflammation (colitis) can cause illnesses to last longer, and many others.

The doc told me that his colon would eventually get its tone back as long as we keep him from getting constipated again. If he gets constipated again, his colon will get stretched out again. He didn't express any concern about the stretching, except that it could cause things to move more slowly through his colon. Hence, we need to keep him regular as much as possible.

The gastritis means inflammation of the stomach. He said it's usually caused by too much acid in the stomach and the patient usually suffers from acid reflux. I asked what obvious symptoms I would see in Lukas and he said mainly pain in the upper chest. Lukas has never complained of hurting there, so I figured this particular condition could wait until we take care of the things that are causing him pain.

Bacteria overgrowth is too much bad bacteria in the colon. It can be caused by constipation, which leaves old stool in one spot for a while and a build up of that bacteria can happen. Yet another reason to keep him regular. So, this bacteria overgrowth can create gas, and therefore a bloated painful tummy. I've seen this lots of times in Lukas. This pain will keep him from eating, it will make him cry, and his tummy is hard and bloated.

The focal active colitis is still in the "I'm not sure what to do about that" stage. But, when Lukas's tummy is hurting, and it's not bloated or gassy, I'll ask him where it hurts and he always points to the upper portion of his tummy, right below his rib cage. The doc said this is where they found the colitis, so it is causing him pain as well. He did tell me that this colitis would not cause his illnesses to last longer than normal, unless it was a stomach virus. Then he could potentially have the virus for twice as long, but it would not last for a month. The colitis needs to be addressed because if it is not taken care of, or if it becomes a chronic condition, it could potentially turn into a more serious disease, like Crohn's disease. The doc said Lukas will need another colonoscopy in a year to determine if the inflammation has gone away, and if there are any other spots where the inflammation has cropped up.

So, based on all this information, we determined that we need to take care of the bacteria overgrowth first. We will put Lukas on an antibiotic for a period of time, followed by a probiotic to reset all the good bacteria in his colon. Then we will consider what to do about his inflammation. We don't know what is causing the inflammation, so this might take longer to figure out.

What does this have to do with how sick he got last year? I have no idea, and I don't really care. We found things that were wrong, things that are causing him pain, and we can do something about it. I am still terrified that he will get a stomach virus and we will be dealing with another month of wondering if we should take him to the hospital, but at least we are getting somewhere in the meantime. And I do have my referral now so I have a specialist to call if things get bad.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Flu Update

That evening, after the last post below, I woke Jesse up at 10:30 to give him some more medication. He had two doses of the Tamiflu so far and I had kept up on the Tylenol/Motrin so I was expecting his fever to be better. Well, it wasn't. His fever had gone up to 105. And then I checked his skin again, and he definitely had hives. Silver dollar sized welts on his face, shoulders, arms, and bum.

I called the doc, worried that I need to take him to the ER, and she talked me down, told me to give him the Benadryl (which I hadn't yet because I had just got it at the store), and watch him. She was surprised that he was allergic to the Tamiflu because that is very rare. Well, I did what she said and the hives slowly went away and his fever came down again.

Thinking back on it, I should have just taken him to the ER. Things turned out OK, but because of how severe his reaction was to the medication and how high his fever was, taking him to the ER would have been the safest option. He's now doing just fine and has a lingering cough. No fever, and no hives.

The rest of us are now dealing with the flu and some are having a harder time of it than others. My flu is centered in my chest. Coughing feels like my chest is going to explode so I do my best to not cough. Taylor is pretty out of it, but the boys are holding up pretty well. They even wanted to ride their bikes today.

The doc prescribed Tamiflu to both Jeriah and Lukas, and after their first dose of it they also had a reaction to the medication. Not hives, but minor delirium, confusion, and agitation. Lukas would be asleep, and then his eyes would be open, and just staring. But he wasn't asleep. If I moved, he would focus on me and his eyes would follow me around. He wouldn't respond to me if I talked to him, and he just looked really confused. Then he would slowly come out of it and finally begin to respond to me.

Jeriah would wake up crying and whining, and then talk like he was still dreaming. But he would respond to us like he was awake. He's never done that before. He was just really out of it, and it was almost like he was hallucinating.

Both of their fevers were in the 101 range, so I couldn't blame it on a high fever. I didn't give them any more of the Tamiflu and they have been fine since.

The flu hasn't been as bad as I feared so far. I can still move around and sort of take care of things. If I do too much then I start coughing and that's not good. Taylor has to sleep a lot before he feels OK to get up. The boys still have small fevers and they have watched movies all day long for two days straight. I've got a little setup on my kitchen table with medications, cups, thermometer, tissues, and clorox wipes. Since we've all got it at the same time, no one has been all that hungry so I haven't felt the need to make any meals. I just hope it goes quickly and never comes back.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

The Colon and The Flu

Life around here has been pretty interesting as of late. Lukas has dealt with digestive system issues for a little while now and he was finally sent to a specialist in Salt Lake City. Since then, he's been doing fine, except for a little complaining now and then of having a hurt tummy. Nothing like we had been dealing with before. The doctor still wanted to do a colonoscopy and an endoscopy to cover the bases and because there is Crohn's disease in my family. Last week Lukas endured those procedures, which was scary for him and for me.

The doc found some interesting things.

His colon has extra loops that cross over his entire abdomen. He has swollen lymph nodes all through his colon. He also has a spot of inflammation that has been labeled as mild focal active colitis. We are still trying to determine what to do about that inflammation and it seems like we are still at a trial and error stage.

He hasn't complained very much lately about his tummy, so I'm not sure how vigorous to be with this.

That has been one of the things on my mind. This is the other:

Last night, I read a some stories that families have posted online about children passing away due to whooping cough, influenza, and other diseases. They wrote about the onset of the sickness all the way to the death of their child. Some of the children just passed away while watching a movie and the parent thought their child just had a cold. Some had to go through a torturous ordeal of blood transfusions and other things until there was nothing else the doctors could do. Then they had to watch their child die when taken off life support. It was an eye opener to me and I went to bed with these stories in my head.

Today, at about 2 in the morning, Jesse woke up with a fever and was breathing erratically. I didn't have any Tylenol on hand, and there are no 24 hour places in town so I couldn't go run to the store. I brought him in bed with me to keep watch over his breathing, thinking of these stories of children who just stopped breathing and died. This morning his fever spiked to 102.5 and I waited impatiently for the opportunity to take him to the doctor. He was moaning, flushed, drooling, and weak. I thought maybe strep throat because it seemed painful for him to swallow. Taylor came home from class and I quickly took Jesse to the doctor.

After swabbing him and poking him, they determined he had the flu. But not just one strain of it. He has both Type A and Type B. She said that is very rare and is surprised to see it in him.

What? Not 24 hours after I read horror stories about children getting the flu, and now my child has not just one strain of it, but BOTH? He's a year and a half. And I'm a little terrified.

I was told it is highly contagious, so I needed to be careful. He was prescribed Tamiflu and a regimen of both Tylenol and ibuprofen to keep the fever down, and I was told to watch for dehydration or difficulty breathing. Then we were sent out the door by a concerned doctor who told me many times that she's on call until Monday and if things get worse, or I'm worried about something, to call her any time, day or night.

Jesse stayed with either me or Taylor all day until about three in the afternoon when I was finally able to lay him down by himself. He slept for 2 1/2 hours and I woke him up to give him more Tylenol. I also checked his temperature and it had gone up to 103.5. I checked his diaper and was shocked to see all these mosquito bite looking bumps all over his bum. I then thoroughly checked the rest of him and he had a couple of them on his shoulder and jawline. So, I took him back to the doctor worried he was having an allergic reaction to the medication, or maybe something worse.

She took a look at him and said it could be from the fever being so high, but I could give him some Benedryl just to be safe. Then she told me if he doesn't have a wet diaper by the time the office opens in the morning, I will need to bring him in to get an IV of some liquids. Again, she told me about her being on call, and to call her if anything changes for the worse. She then added that if she doesn't hear from me in the night, she will call me when she gets into the office in the morning to check in and see how things are going.

Tonight, Jesse will not sleep alone. He will be hovered over until he is getting better. I cannot, after learning about what other mothers have gone through and hearing how concerned the doctor is, take this lightly. He is my baby, and it tears me apart to see him so sick. I am praying he doesn't get any worse.

Life has certainly been a roller coaster.