Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Party of Six

How in the world has an entire month gone by without an update from the Dream Weavers?  Oh… Yeah… Six people make for a VERY busy life under one roof!  Let’s see…  Professional development classes for me, dance for Lara, basketball season came to an apex and (an undefeated) close for Jake, various family members went to the dentist, Britt and Betsey started Stillwater March for Babies committee meetings (mark your calendar for Saturday, September 20), Britt started working a night job at the print shop for Eskimo Joe’s Promotional Products Group, we attended an NBA Thunder game as a family, survived snow storms and snow days (which will have to be made up), Emma and Lara went to a middle school dance, various birthday parties and sleepovers for the big kids, signing Emma up for spring volleyball, Alpha Delta Pi meetings and events for me, Finn is two (and all that entails), and yesterday it was 78 degrees outside and tonight baseball practice starts for Jake.  WHEW!  What’d I miss?  LOTS I am sure.  I am so thankful for my fun, busy, crazy family; but it is kind of overwhelming to look back over a month and see all that has happened!

I feel like we are falling into a routine with the new work schedules.  It is still crazy for me to get out the door and be ta work by 7:30, but I am making it every day.  I sure like getting off at 2:00!  Gives me a minute to breathe!  To run errands, be creative and work on Dream Weaver Prints business, and to be there for my kids when they get home from school.  Even if I’m not armed and ready with gourmet snacks and fresh squeezed lemonade, I am THERE!  We do chores, laundry, watch TV, whatever until it’s time to start dinner.  Which is early!  With Britt working nights, he gets home from his day job about 5:15, and needs to leave for his night job at 5:40.  That’s 30 minutes to eat, change, and love on him!  So, we start dinner about 4:00 these days!  Emma and Lara are ESSENTIAL in this process!  They are either helping me prep food, or helping keep Finn out of the kitchen!  We have tried lots of fun recipes and have generally enjoyed working as a family to make sure Daddy has a good dinner before he takes off to work hard for our family.  It may not be what we ever wanted, but we are making the most of it!

As for Finn and what’s up in his unique little preemie world…  We decided a couple of weeks ago that he was not progressing as we wanted him too.  Yes, SoonerStart (early intervention) comes once a month or so to evaluate him, and they think he’s doing “fine,” but there are just so many things we WASN’T doing!  Like, I don’t know… EATING!  We had been told to encourage him, and to introduce new textures, and the list goes on.  Nothing was working.  And he was just too skinny in our opinions.  Add to that, he isolates himself at school and doesn’t participate, won’t talk to his teachers, and has some other peculiar social traits.  We decided it was time to get a professional opinion.  Off to the pediatrician we went!  We left there knowing he has not gained a single ounce in 4 months, but had grown taller, with a prescription for an appetite stimulant, a referral to an endocrinologist, and a referral to an occupational therapist.  And a smile on our faces 3 miles wide knowing we were getting help for our little man who we were tired of watching struggle.

We started the appetite stimulant last Tuesday morning.  He takes it twice a day with food.  So, we give it to him at 7:00am after his “breakfast” Pedia Sure and at 2:30-ish after his “afternoon snack” Pedia Sure.  The drug fact sheet stated that “you might notice an increased appetite after prolonged use.”  If by prolonged use, you mean one dose, then YES!  Yes, it does increase appetite!  He has been eating more food in the past week than he did in the past 6 months combined!  More volume, more variations, better foods (not just Goldfish crackers and pudding), more frequency!  His cute little belly just sticks out all the time now!  We are so happy it is working so well for him!  And the even bigger bonus, it has COMPLETELY changed his attitude and demeanor!  Finn has always been a sweet boy, but he was often grumpy and inconsolable, and hard to get him to participate in anything.  Now, he is happier, more involved and engaged, and sleeping better.  He’s also a bit more ornery, but we’ll take it!  In one short week, he has become a completely different child.  It makes us wonder if he was just hungry all along but didn’t know how to fix it.  Or his blood sugar levels were all over the place due to lack of nutrition…  Poor guy!  We’re just happy to see him doing SO MUCH better!

Today we start another adventure with him.  He has his first evaluation with an Occupational Therapist here in town.  We are hoping to help him learn the skills and confidence to do things more independently.  With Mommy, Daddy, 3 older siblings, and Nana the Wonder Sitter, it’s no wonder he doesn’t want to be self-sufficient!  We hope to just help him learn what he needs to be more in par with his peers.  And of course, a bit selfishly perhaps, we want him to be less clingy and needy.  We know part of that is being 2, but having raised 3 other 2 year olds, and knowing how incredible smart he is (sometime I’ll tell you about his puzzle skills), I know he is capable of so much more!  I just can’t wait to see him thrive! 

The break between updates will not be as long next time.  I hope the Occupational Therapy takes off like the appetite stimulant did, and we see fast results!  We’re still waiting on the referral for the endocrinologist, too.  My prayer is that in 6 months, we will look back on this and know we did the right thing and will be able to see marked improvement in our awesome preemie!  He has always been the kind that needed an extra push!  Always a fighter, our Finicky Finn!

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