Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Waterbabies FINALLY

So last September/October, Cayden and I participated in a Waterbabies at the pool in Corvallis. When the class ended in October, they took underwater pictures of our babies, and I promptly paid the $2 and ordered one. They were supposed to email the photo within 2 weeks.....really? It takes 2 weeks to email a digital photo? So I waited. And never got the photo. By the end of November, I called the aquatic center, but there is apparently only one guy who can send the photos, and he only works Mondays. So then I promptly forgot every time Monday comes around. So I finally went in to the pool this past Monday and talked to them, and they were surprisingly helpful for the first time! They found my order form and apologized and said they would email me the photo. This is the photo that came to my email...
For many obvious reasons, this is not me or my baby. FAIL. So I emailed them back, with a picture of Cayden and asked if they could send a picture of my baby. She promptly sent me 3 pictures of Cayden (YAY!), two of which are shown below!

Isn't she so cute underwater? Apparently she doesn't know how to close her mouth.

This is her going underwater....

She did not love being dunked, but she never cried either. She did like the water, probably because it was nice and warm!
She's smiling!

Anyway, three months late, but better late than never!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

An Update

Today would have been Beth's 39th birthday. We started our day with her parents, having lunch in Salem.

It was a great time of soup, salad, cheeseburger sliders and lots of messy crackers and cheese for Cayden (which ended up all over the Applebee's floor). Cayden had a great time playing with Vic's iPhone (she likes to see herself on the camera), and making scrunchy smiles at us. We spent about and hour and a half telling stories about Beth, and wishing she could be here with us. Vic and Carolyn are so special to us, and it was a good time together. After lunch, Carolyn was off to a hair appointment and I drove over to church to visit with my dad because we had a few extra minutes. Bryan's mom stopped by to see us too, and Cayden lit up and crawled right to her. Then we had to hurry home for Cayden's doctor's appointment....I thought she might have an ear infection, but it turned out to be nothing.

In other medical news, I went to the endocrinologist again yesterday, to find out if my blood work is normal yet. I had blood taken a couple of weeks ago, and the doctor gave me the results yesterday. Some of my hormones are back to normal, my liver is healthy and my blood count is good, but my TSH is still low, which means that I can't have surgery or take the radioactive iodine pill yet. They are going to switch my medication to help the TSH come back up, and I have to have blood taken again in early March. My endo told me I need to make a decision about what I want to do by the time I go back to see her in mid-March.

Since my last post about my Graves' Disease, I've learned a few things.  I actually have three options.

Option #1: Take medication.

There are two types of medication to combat hyerthyroidism (Graves' Disease), Methimazole (what I'm currently taking) and Propylthiouracil, or PTU, (what I will soon be taking). Methimazole limited my tremor, got control of my metabolism, and helped me gain back 10 pounds, but it's not doing the trick to increase my TSH. PTU is a different drug that helps more with the TSH so I will be starting that. It's more pills per day (12 compared to 3), and has a black box warning, which means it can cause liver failure. My doctor said there is a 5-7% chance of liver failure. In six weeks, I will need to check my liver and kidney functions, to make sure everything is ok. The cool thing about PTU, is you can use it during pregnancy, unlike Methimazole. So I could just take PTU during my next pregnancy, and then deal with the surgery/RAI pill decision after the baby is weaned. You can also breastfeed on PTU. Both medications are basically band-aids for Graves'. The only definitive treatment is removal or destruction of my thyroid.

Option #2: Radioactive Iodine (RAI)

New things I have learned about this include:

Before taking the pill of radioactive iodine, the doctors have to figure out how much radioactivity I need to kill my thyroid. They figure this out by giving me a bunch of iodine and then scanning my neck to see how much iodine is retained by my thyroid. This isn't really a big deal, just something that adds another couple of weeks onto the 1 year+ that I have to wait to be pregnant again.

I cannot travel on a plane right after taking the pill. I have to wait at lease 1 month. This is significant because I might possibly be boarding a plane March 24 to fly to Peru on a mission trip, so I would have to wait until April (when we get back) to take the pill.

I would take the pill at Salem Hospital. (Not significant)

3-6 months after taking the RAI pill, I would get checked to see if it worked (if my thyroid is destroyed). If it didn't work (which can happen), I will have to take another pill (meaning another year to wait for pregnancy).

Right after I take the pill, I have to be completely isolated from everyone for 1-2 days. Then 7 days from babies under 2 and pregnant women.

Option #3: Surgery to remove my thyroid

New things I have learned about this include:

Recovery is 1-2 DAYS.

A couple of weeks after the surgery, my levels would be tested, and if they are fine, doctors will have no problem with me getting pregnant.

So those are my options. I've asked multiple doctors multiple times, whether or not this might just go away with a change of diet, or after being on meds for a while, but they were all very adamant that it is here to stay. I did the math.

RAI best case scenario:
IF my levels are fine by my March 20 appointment, I would have to schedule a scan and uptake maybe the first week of April, then another 2-3 weeks to get the pill taking scheduled, we are looking at the last week of April.
IF the pill works, then one year from that date (April 24, 2013), Cayden will have already turned 2. Add a year for conception and pregnancy (April 2014), and Cayden will be past 3 years old when baby #2 is born, and I will be 29.

RAI worst case scenario: (not really the WORST, but relatively the worst timing)
My levels are NOT fine in March, so we wait another 2 months, and check my blood work in May. IF my levels are fine then, I would take the pill 3 weeks later (June 10, 2012 - ironically our 6th wedding anniversary). If the pill doesn't completely work, I would find that out 6 months after (October 24, 2012) and then probably take another 2-3 weeks to schedule another pill taking at the hospital (December 7, 2012). One year after that (December 7, 2013), Cayden would be nearly 3 years old. Add a year for conception and pregnancy (December 2014) and Cayden will be nearly 4 when baby #2 is born, and I will be 30 in a few months.

This whole thing makes me feel old.

And indecisive.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

A White Wake-up!

We woke up to snow today!

Daddy was already at church :( but the kids and I all went out to play in it.
 Check out Joe's choice of footwear.....he went and changed when we started rolling the snowman.
 Cayden wasn't so sure about all this bright, wet stuff, but she did like eating it, and didn't seem to mind the cold fingers.
 Here's our snowman. Pretty good, if you ask me! Unfortunately, it only lasted about an hour because someone came and kicked it over! Darn Adair Village kids!
 It was a fun to see the kids enjoying the snow!

Friday, January 13, 2012

Our lucky day

We have heat!

Just in time for the impending cold snap, our heater is up and running! It only took 2 visits from NW Natural, 2 new ignitors bought online (which ended up NOT being the problem), 3 visits from Pace Heating, 2 new circuit boards and 1 big credit card swipe and we are now warm in the whole house (not just downstairs next to the fireplace!

In an earlier post, I mentioned how God gives and takes away.....well He gave again today when the Pace Heating guy waived the initial $79 diagnostic fee! Such a blessing! God is good.

For the  purpose of documentation, Cayden and I developed a new game today. She has gotten really attached to her rubber ducky, and so I put it up on the 4th stair, and she learned how to crawl all the way up the stairs to get it, and then we practiced coming back down on her bum.

She wanted to do it over and over again, and even showed the kids when they got home from school! She is very careful when going down, a little nervous even, but she is brave.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Lost and found

Making messes is her specialty. Today she discovered how fun it is to empty my Tupperware drawer (twice).

 I also discovered where all the binkies have gone! I lifted up the foot of Cayden's new 7-armed Octopus toy and found a binkie! I rattled it a little and yes, there was another one in there! Apparently Cayden doesn't understand you are supposed to put balls down the chute, not binkies!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Give and Take

Today I felt productive.

When Cayden sleeps basically uninterrupted until 11:30 a.m., I find myself with LOTS of time, but usually I just waste that time playing Lexulous on Facebook, reading my friend of a friend of a friend's blog, or catching up on "Army Wives" on Netflix.

Instead, today I cleaned the house (the downstairs at least), including sweeping and vacuuming, cleaned up Cayden's room (I always pile her clean clothes on the floor after folding them because I am lazy. Today I tackled the pile.), hosted a quick lunch for some hungry high schoolers, got the furnace checked out by a professional (it only took a month of no heat), went grocery shopping, Asia Market shopping, bought new wipers for my car, and went to Home Depot for a new furnace filter (all with baby in tow). It was a good day of checking off things on my list.

I know this is super not interesting, but it's  my blog, so I don't really care. I just wanted to record that I do have the capability of not being lazy, as a note to myself.

On another note, yesterday we were so excited to finally receive a $484.88 reimbursement check from the hospital because we overpaid one of Cayden's bills due to an insurance error. I discovered this error a couple of months ago after hours and hours of tedious digging through EOBs and bills and unending back and forth between the hospital and the insurance company. I had the check signed and in my wallet, ready for deposit today when the furnace guy leans against my door jam and tells me I need a new circuit board.

 Price tag? $415.

As I'm handing over my Mastercard for the $79 diagnostic fee (not included in the $415), I'm doing the math. We came into today $484.88 richer, but we end it $9.12 in the hole.

Sometimes God gives and takes very quickly; sometimes so quickly we don't even take the time to thank Him for the GIVE and just jump to grieving the TAKE.

 But today, I am thankful. We're getting the furnace fixed for nine dollars and twelve cents. Not bad.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

10 month stats

Weight: 18 pounds, 15 ounces (54th percentile)
Height: 28 1/8 inches (49th percentile)
 Head: 18 1/4 inches (91st percentile)
 Cayden is MOBILE! She loves to chew on paper and computer cords and all things dangly and zippery. She has 4 teeth (two on top and two on bottom) and has started to bite my shoulder sometimes. She understands tone of voice because when I unlatch her and say "no biting," she cries like she knows she was bad. She is very mischievous, when we say "Cayden, no, no," she usually books it faster toward the "no no." She loves to climb the stairs, but usually only gets up one, then we take her down and put up the gate. When we take something away, she cries big tears for about 10 seconds, then moves on.
 When she sees someone she knows, she now gives an open mouth smile, usually sticking her tongue out at the same time. She's pretty good at smiling on cue but really bad at staying in one place for pictures! Her hair is crazy and growing out of control, so we resort to pig tails because barrettes are always falling out. Cayden had to stop breastfeeding this past month because of medication I needed to take, and she still doesn't love drinking formula all the time, but we are working on it.
Mostly she just loves eating, whether it's baby food, oatmeal, bananas, grapes, graham crackers, string cheese or bread. She does not like avocados or yellow cheese. She is wearing 12-month-old clothes, and some of those are even too small (as seen above). Her little belly likes to poke out when she's not wearing onesies underneath. This month people have told me she looks like my mother-in-law, like my little brother, like my sister-in-law, like my husband, and like I'd say she is a good mix of all of our genes. She's definitely a Cayden and we love her so much.

She is sleeping about 12 hours a night, and taking 2-3 naps as well. She is a light sleeper, waking up with the kids in the morning when she hears the shower (so we relish the weekends especially when everyone sleeps til 9:30). She's obviously growing, but when she is awake, she's usually in a great mood.  

Thursday, January 5, 2012

SeakRest 2011

The Bernards had our annual Post-Christmas vacation at SeakRest Lodge in Newport last week. Bryan's parents, brother and sister-in-law, sister, grandparents, 2 aunts, one uncle, and 2 cousins all spent 4 days over at the beach together playing games and watching the crazy rain beat against the huge windows overlooking the Pacific.

 We did get one nice day, and we headed down to the beach to take advantage.
Cayden had a good time with all of her relatives to take care of her. 
She especially loves it when Auntie Carrie spins her around in circles.