Thursday, November 29, 2007

When good relationships go bad...

It is nice to develop a "relationship" with the collection of doctors, dentists, etc. who touch your life. Even if it is somewhat illusory - as a professional, they probably see tons of patients - you are still part of those tons. And you get to see the same face, when you are often ill, in pain, or at some sort of vulnerable point.

What do you do when those relationships aren't quite going the way you'd hoped? If it is near the beginning, like when I was interviewing an OB for example, it can be pretty easy to just say Yeesh, no way and move on. But what if it's further along in the process? I've documented a bit of my battle with my gastroenterologist. I'm still more than a little peeved that it took a year and a half of my life (and nearly all of Daniel's) to diagnose and treat gallstones. Yet more testing is to follow to confirm whatever they think is going on with my liver. I'm being told it's benign, but we're still looking...

H has been going through his own version of this lately with a toothache. Our whole family followed our dentist to his own practice. Awhile back, my sister-in-law had a bunch of work done and suddenly came down with tooth pain of undetermined origin. It lasted a month, and eventually faded. H has had several appointments recently. First diagnosis: gum inflammation. Second appointment resulted in a prescription for antibiotics, and a potential upcoming root canal.

It's miserable. As anyone who has had serious tooth pain will tell you, it colors everything that you do. At what point do you say Enough. This isn't working. And move on?

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Stop the Insanity!

We watch TV at our house. Courtesy of the local library, Uncle B and a variety of sources we have seen a spike in available DVDs. The toddler prince of the DmF household has suddenly sparked to the idea that Hey! These sparkly disc-things give me control over what's on the TV!

Mama is trying to figure out how to not have to watch the trash truck video for the eight bajillionth time.

When my family arrived for Thanksgiving, TV football arrived with them. After about the third day, Daniel was getting antsy at having no TV control. When he was finally told that we could put one of his shows in he very purposefully walked around the kitchen table to tell Uncle A - No. As in: It's not your turn anymore buddy! We all roared. I've said it before. The kid knows what he wants.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

It's a good thing...

Back from a mini-blogging break... This was the very first time I cooked for Thanksgiving. I'm thankful my turkey went off without a hitch! And also thankful for a Mom and Dad and brother who made the trek out to New England from the wilds of Wisconsin and Michigan to help make this a fun time for H and Daniel and I.

There was lots of eating, lots of football on the television... as an experiment I tried these thin mints from a Kraft recipe. Very yummy! Daniel was in heaven with all the attention and company... and the case of 30-year-old matchbox cars that his uncle brought with him.

I feel the miles between my family and I rather keenly at moments like these. But I am so thankful for visits like this just the same. Wishing you all a belated Happy Thanksgiving, and a glorious start to the Christmas Season!

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Toddler Whiplash is Brutal

I occasionally have to remind myself that this little person I am parenting is just that - a little person, who is perfectly capable of getting up on the wrong side of the bed some mornings.

We had a nice visit to the favorite playspace on Thursday morning. Daniel had a chance to tear around the place and I got a chance to chat with a Mom I am getting to know. We were both trying to maneuver our kids into leaving around the same time when Daniel suddenly popped up with, "Marissa hold hand! Marissa hold hand!" She thought that idea was pretty cool, and since Daniel had his Mama's hand, she had to have her Mama's hand as well. All linked up the four of us trooped to our respective cars, which was pretty cute.

Flash forward to Friday morning, and we met up with Marissa and her Mom at the local library and Daniel was in a bit of an, um, mood. Not with Marissa, he thought playing with her was great. If he lost her in the crowd of kids in the library on this cold November day he would wind up twisting this way and that saying, "Mrissa? Mrissa?" The mood was reserved for anytime Mama wanted to corral him a bit, or even just a general sit-on-the-floor-for-a-few-sobs or angry kicks. I'm not sure if it was over-stimulation due to the volume of kids around? And he and Marissa chasing each other giggling around the stacks in the young-adult section seemed to be a favorite activity. Maybe we should have tried to find a baby gym instead... and now I'm actually wondering if I should show my face around the library anytime soon...

Ah, toddler mood-swings. From everything I've read, it's just all about being a two-year old. Even the part about reserving the temper for Mama. I guess they do it, just because they can. They know that Mama isn't going to go away. It doesn't make it any easier on my patience, though.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

The best laid plans... and all that

I've been craving some "get together with friends" time lately. With kids, without kids, it almost doesn't matter. It feels like a need to be sure and use these "nice" days to their fullest extent before the weather forces us all indoors on a more permanent basis. I guess I tend to hibernate during the winter months.

It just hasn't been happening, which is frustrating. My sister-in-law with the 3 year old, the closest cousin to Daniel's age, and I have been trying to get together for weeks. A busted water heater, various work schedules, and a dead car have thrown themselves across our respective paths. Pamela and I have been been dealing with similar items - that dratted water heater, a cracked car windshield, braces, various illnesses, work commitments, family commitments.... Despite all this, I signed us (I thought) up for the November 12th showing of Battlestar Galactica Razor at a local theater.

Turns out the organizers, in their infinite wisdom had deemed it one signup per email address. A fact which had escaped me. Especially as I was busy trying to track down a confirmation email that I never received. I mean really. It occasionally happens, but how many people go to the movies solo? It should have been two "tickets" per signup... My inner Type A/Event Organizer was rebelling at how this whole thing was put together. Especially against all the gaming commercials at the beginning of each reel of the movie. At one point I was wondering if the projectionist had pushed the wrong button, and we were back at the beginning, but I digress...

Pamela, still not feeling well, excused herself insisting that I stay to watch the show. So again... no get together with a good friend who I haven't seen in awhile. Sigh.

On the plus side: for Battlestar Galactica fans out there, I can recommend the movie premiering on the SciFi Channel on November 24th. They have done an excellent job weaving the backstory of the Pegasus through with events and characters that we already know. There is solid acting by all involved, gripping action scenes, and I am always impressed when writers pay such attention to detail.

I, in the meantime, will be back to trying to connect face to face with the friends in my life.

Saturday, November 10, 2007


Our favorite family playspace has a wonderful selection of playgroups, parent classes and parent/child activities. They run in 8 week sessions, break for just some "drop in" time and start the next 8 week session.

Demand can be high for some activities, so they usually ask that you rotate out. This usually puts me in a bit of a quandary, as Daniel's favorite is just to jump into a playgroup. The playgroups are loosely structured - they usually plan some sort of craft or sensory activity (boy did he love digging in the rice and beans!), but kids are free to do whatever they like in the play area.

Alternatively there are more structured classes involving music or motion, or kids in the kitchen, or art. We tried a motion class, and Daniel was the kid "ping-ponging" around the room pretty much ignoring any directions and doing what he felt like. I'm torn about what to try next... While I think it's good for him to be exposed to classes with more structure, I would catch him looking longingly at the door to the playspace while we were in the other class. I cherish that independent spirit in my little boy who knows what he wants.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Larks, Owls, and Toddlers with Messy Schedules... Oh My!

Years ago I was a night owl. I dropped naps at the first possible opportunity, stayed up to all hours (often for the express purpose of reading in bed at night) and yet got up for school the next day. I just seemed to need very little sleep. What I wouldn't give for that "Superpower" back!

Somewhere along the line I turned into a lark. Even before having Daniel, I started peeling myself out of bed earlier to beat the morning traffic in to work. The habit continued and my mornings are now a bit of quiet time before having to chase a toddler around.

H has a different conundrum. He is, and will probably always be a night owl. Unfortunately his job dictates otherwise as it is necessary to get up pretty early. This results in surviving on not enough sleep, and the two of us "passing in the night." I'm still not sure of a solution...

The first few years of his life Daniel hardly noticed the Daylight Savings Time changes. This past Sunday threw him off a bit, however. We were up earlier, crankier sooner before his nap... And the drive home from his Gram's house at 5:15pm in the pitch dark really had him wondering. He sat in his car seat and kept calling from the back for "Blankie? Blankie!"

I think things have finally smoothed over...

Saturday, November 03, 2007

The Calm before The Storm

A great big thank you to the person who parked next to me at CVS yesterday - darn near diagonally in their parking space - thereby encouraging some interesting acrobatics to get my two year old back into his car seat.

During this feat of gymnastics I happened to note the presence of at least one kid's car seat in said car... I can only hope that the van belonged to the woman in the store who was busily pushing the double stroller through the too-small aisles. She looked like she had her hands full, and that's the only way I can mentally cut her some slack at this point...

We are water-heater operational again, and I am composing my complaint letter to Sears next. More on that as I have more news to tell... The jury/trial that H landed on is still going on, much to our dismay as this is getting pretty inconvenient. Flu shots today for baby and I - H is next. Otherwise we are just hunkering down to outlast the remnants of Storm Noel.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Snot (a) Post

I haven't been able to pinpoint exactly when it happened, but Daniel has become aware of when his nose is full. This elicits much sympathy from Mama when he has a cold and is just feeling generally miserable.

Not so much when it is tantrum time and he proceeds to scream and cry himself snotty. He stops. He gets an odd look on his face, and swipes at it in a pique of fury yelling nose, Nose, NOSE!!!

Any tips on teaching a two year old how to blow his nose?

He also charmed the pants off me yesterday when during a diaper change he proceeded to start naming off body parts - not his own, but mine. Pats my arm - Mama arm. Reaches up - Mama eye. Makes hand motions until I lean closer, then pats my forehead - Mama bangs.

I almost fell over howling with laughter. Maybe it comes from us being all talk and no action about cutting his hair? We're always saying, Come here honey. Just let me cut your bangs a little bit...