Monday, October 31, 2011

A Tough Few Days

It has been a tough few days.

Friday I took K to the hospital to visit J. As we finished our visit and stepped out of the room I said to K, "I am just going to talk to the nurse, I will be right back." I assumed that she would wait right there for me. I went about 15 feet down the hall and spoke to our nurse about J. I was probably gone for maybe a minute. K should have been able to hear my voice the entire time. When I get back she is not there. I call her name. No answer. Where did she go? Where could she have gone in such a short time? I call all around the ward, nothing. A woman sees me calling and offers to help. She leaves the ward to check in the main hall. I think "There is no way she could be out there. She cannot reach or even open that heavy door, plus why would she leave when she knew where I was and could hear me talking to the nurse?" I forget that five year olds do not use logic. Another minute of calling/looking around the ward convinces me she must be in the hall. There are some people sitting right outside the ward door. They confirm that a little blond haired girl in a light blue coat went by them a few minutes ago. I find her crying with the woman who offered to help look for her about 200 meters down the hall. How did she get so far so fast and why? I want to beat her with a stick, but she is so upset that I can only console her. She says she thought I left without her. 

To add insult, I cannot find the car in the parking lot. I think people who cannot rere they parked are embarrassingly dumb. Today, I is one. I have been to this hospital so many times that the days are merging into one big haze. I walk around the parking lot on multiple levels, dragging a 5 year old by the hand looking for the car. Checking all the spots we have parked in the last 40 days. I start to think the car must have been stolen. I find the car, right where I left it.

Saturday, the Wife goes to visit J. As she discusses with the staff the next steps to get her off the breathing machine, they laugh when she talks about the process that I had understood we would follow on Friday. The hospital is a big bureaucracy. Sometimes the hands do not talk to each other. The Wife is upset. I will have to go in on Sunday to straighten it out.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

The Household is Down

A bad last 2 days at the MLWGF household. 

The Wife is sick, some sort of stomach bug (throwing up). K was sick this morning, and I don't feel 100% (but I am still able to function). And J is still in the hospital (but doing well). 

I have not been able to visit, as I am taking care of the ones at home. I guess it is lucky that she is still in the hospital, as she might catch what we have.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Wisdom of a 5 Year Old - Adult Relationships

K: Daddy, do you know where Mommy is?

Me: Mommy? Who is that?

K: You know who Mommy is! She is the person you argue with all the time.

Me: Oh ya. Now I remember.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Hospital Update #2

On Saturday J was moved from the intensive care unit to the normal ward. This is a positive step and I think she will be coming home soon.

The next step is to slowly reduce the amount of pressure the machine is putting out and see if her lungs can handle it. They will also try removing the breathing support for a short time, slowing increasing the amount of time as she shows she can handle it.

I am very positive about her recovery. She looks very strong. I think she will do well at each step and she is stronger and better than the doctor's think. I have been saying this for some time and have yet to be proven wrong.

I hope to have her home by Thursday.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Is She Trying to Piss Me Off?

This happens a lot and happened today while we were at the hospital. 

We are sitting down eating our lunch after visiting J in the hospital. I am enjoying my pizza and relaxing. K is eating her lunch. She is eating yogurt with large chunks of fruit in it and using a spoon. The fruit is big and she is having trouble getting it on the spoon and getting it into her mouth. Has she complained about it? No? Is she asking for help with it? No. But the Wife thinks she needs help so she goes and gets a fork to use and then tries to get the kid to use the fork.

I am not big on helping kids. I subscribe to the theory of supervised neglect. If a kid leaves the house without a coat and it is cold outside, nature will smarten them up. Eventually the kid will think to wear his/her coat without you having to tell them. Who wants a 17 year old son who still needs his mother to tell him to wear a coat? K is five, so you have to be a bit more careful, but the principle applies. I try to get her to think about what she needs, not tell her and then get it for her. For example, if it was me who noticed that she needed a fork, I would ask her, “Are you having trouble eating your fruit? Do you need a fork?” If she said yes, I would tell her that the forks were over there and she should go and get one.

Not the wife. With her its all “You need a fork, I will go get you one.” It bugs me, but hey, if she wants to spend all dinner getting up every 40 seconds to solve invented problems that is her business.

But then she tries to get me involved. Not one minute after she get the fork, K knocks it off the table and on to the floor. It is dirty and cannot be used. The wife asks me “Honey, will you get K a new fork?” Here I am, tired, just sitting down and enjoying my lunch, about to take a big bite out of my nice cheese pizza, and now I have to get up? I don't mind if she tries to help K, mother her, assuage her feelings of guilt for not staying home by smothering her and doing everything for her as if she was an invalid, but don't bring me into it.

This happens all the time and I am surprised how much it pisses me off. If I had a nickel for every time the wife asked be to get something for one of the kids within 15 seconds of me sitting down on the couch. She thinks its fair to force me to get something because she just got up to get something, when the kid could have got both of those things for herself, or didn't care about it anyway.

She never did use that fork.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Hosptial Update

J is doing well.

The breathing tube came out a few days ago and a bunch more lines came out yesterday. Right now she only has her feeding attached (which she would have at home anyway) and a breathing mask which forces air into her lungs to keep them inflated (called bipap (sp?))

I am not sure she even needs that. She looks back to her normal self. In fact, she has for at least the last five days. They are still very cautious and are saying that it will probably be another 7-10 days. That seems way too long to me. I have already put them on notice that I think she is good now. I will give them over the weekend to see how she does and then really start to push it.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Nature vs ?

I find the different ways that boys and girls act to be interesting. Before 5 years old, boys and girls are not supposed to really understand their differences. Anyone who is a parent knows that is crap and the boys and girls are different right from the start.

I was recently the volunteer at K's Kindergarten class. It was library day, so everyone had to line up and walk to the library behind the teacher. I followed behind to prevent any escapes. One of the rules is that the kids have to walk with their hands behind their back. I think this is to prevent them from pushing, poking or hitting each other as they walk down the hall. It is quite a ways from their classroom to the library  and due to their short attention spans, the line ends up snaking all through the school. The teacher cannot watch them all. You wouldn't think 15 five year old kids would need 75 yards of space, but they do.

Just before we leave the class they are reminded that they are to walk with their hands behind their backs. We start to walk and I decide to take a little poll to see how many are following directions. There are nine girls and six boys in the class. Eight of nine girls have their hands behind their backs. Not one boy has his hands behind his back. While the girls are clustered together and following close behind each other, the boys are all over the place, swinging their arms, looking around, goofing off and causing the line to take up so much real estate.

Boys and girls are not the same and no amount of nurture will make it so.

Friday, October 07, 2011

Wisdom of a Four Year Old - Boys and Girls

K: Daddy, I want you to stop doing boy things to me.

Me: What boy things?

K: Pinching me, poking me, saying "stinky" all the time...

Me: Why?

K: Girls things should only be done to girls and boy things to boys. If you do boy things to girls they will turn into a boy.

Monday, October 03, 2011

Three Steps Forward, Two Steps Back

J has been in the hospital for over a week now.

Overall, she is doing much better. She is off the morphine, the blood pressure drugs and her 10 day antibiotic series ends tomorrow.

She is still has the breathing tube in. They hoped to remove it as early as last Wednesday, but she is not ready. The way they do it is to slowly lower the amount of pressure it is putting into her lungs. As they lower the pressure at some point she has a bit of trouble breathing, forcing them to raise it up. However, each time the new standard seems to be lower, so we are making slow progress. The problem is her left lung. Due to her curved spine, her left lung is squished in her body and this is where the pneumonia always starts. Every day they seem hopeful that they might be able to remove the tube in 2 days, but every night she seems to have trouble with the lower level of pressure, forcing them to raise it again. But we are getting closer. The pressure level is a lot lower then when she first came in.

I am hopeful that it may be removed soon, but I have learned to take their predictions with a grain of salt.

As of Friday, they have confirmed that she has another bug, this one quite nasty and tough. She may have caught it in the hospital. Fortunately, it has not advanced far (not like the last one), so it may not take as long to kill. They recently upped the dosage of the antibiotic, so that seems a bit of a concern to me.

More updates as they come.