asthma

Floors and dust and more dust and OMG did I mention the dust?

So yeah… about those floors.  I wrote last month about pulling up our carpet and putting down laminate.  And then all hell broke loose.

But the floors are done!  (YAY).

Here was our living room before.

DSC 0065 300x199 Floors and dust and more dust and OMG did I mention the dust?

Beautiful beige carpet.

But then we did this.

DSC 0071 199x300 Floors and dust and more dust and OMG did I mention the dust?

For the record, I hate ripping up carpet almost as much as I hate painting. Carpet staples are the debbil.

Vista didn’t react well to all the dust stirred up and so went to stay with my parents for a few days while the actual flooring installation was being done.  And it’s a good thing, because despite the effort to poly everything and keep things as clean as possible, laying down new floors creates a dust storm in your house (ie. don’t install new floors if you have any OCD cleaning issues).

This was our first glimpse of the new floors.  Notice the lovely layer of dust on top.  But I was still thrilled with how they came out. Even though it’s laminate, it has a hardwood look.  And I’m so glad we went with the wider planks.

DSC 0086 300x199 Floors and dust and more dust and OMG did I mention the dust?

So after they were done the floors we washed and scrubbed and vacuumed the best we could before bringing Vista back home.

We managed her asthma and the effect the dust was having on it OK until the guys came over that next Monday to finish the stairs.  The little bit of dust it created was just enough to send V over the edge and necessitate a nice little ambulance ride to the hospital.

We knew we couldn’t bring her back to the house after that until all the dust had died down and we had thoroughly cleaned everything.  My parents were gracious enough to let Vista and I stay at their place for the week.  Let me tell you, being back in my childhood room and sleeping in there with my daughter was weird.

We were contemplating going home Thursday morning when Vista informed us her ear was bugging her.  V’s not ever the type of kid to complain that something hurts, so when she does we tend to take it pretty seriously.  She complained just enough to get me to take her into the clinic and after that she never said a word about her ear hurting at all.  But the doc at the clinic confirmed a bad ear infection.  But then he listed to her chest and gave me one of those ‘doctor’ looks.  Apparently she had one heck of a wheeze still going on.

So we ended up a my parents a few extra days while Bil did some extra cleaning and V got a few more days of antibiotics and steroids on board.

Since we’ve been home, she seems to be OK.  But the floors are a bit of an adjustment.

Vista’s done a few slip and slides while trying to lean on the couch.

Our border collie is fine with the laminate (although he was very happy to have V home again).

DSC 0160 300x199 Floors and dust and more dust and OMG did I mention the dust?

My shepherd, however, hates the new floors, preferring now to reside in the front entryway or V’s play tent when she brings it out.

DSC 0171 300x199 Floors and dust and more dust and OMG did I mention the dust?

(I think the pink brings out his eyes).

So, yeah.  It’s been an adventure.  Nothing could ever be simple, not even putting in new floors.

But I am so glad we had them done (and SO glad we didn’t attempt to do them ourselves).

I’m thrilled with how they look.  Now, I just have to get those walls painted… and redo the tile on the fireplace… and paint the kitchen…and… win the lottery evidently.

 

DSC 0179 300x199 Floors and dust and more dust and OMG did I mention the dust?

 

DSC 0199 199x300 Floors and dust and more dust and OMG did I mention the dust?

Cranky

Vista is slowly coming down from the two weeks of oral steroids she was on over Christmas for her asthma.  It’s hard to say when she’ll be back to ‘normal’.  But it’s definitely showing in her behaviors.

Her teacher commented on it at preschool on Monday.  When ever one of the kids would approach her she would scream and throw a fit (see: How to win friends and influence people).

Aaaaand that would be why we’re thankful she has an aide in class with her.  To deal with the situations like that.

At home, though, there’s no aide.  Just us.  It makes for some long days.  Add the fact that the steroids interrupt her sleep patterns and you have long nights too.  And I’m one of those people who NEEEEEED to sleep.  I love my sleep.  I covet the sleep I used to get pre-kid.  Lack of sleep = very cranky Jenn.

And that in a nutshell is why I haven’t been on the interwebs lately.

Cranky kid + cranky parents = not fit for human interaction.

But we’re slowly getting back to normal around here.   Whatever normal means.  If someone figures that out, let me know.

Just call me Dr. Mom

I’m beginning to realize that last winter we really lucked out.

Vista was for the most part healthy and didn’t come down with a lot of colds or sickness.

This year… *sigh*  Is a different story.

As soon as she gets over one cold, we get a week off before she starts getting  sick again.

Bil and I are so over it.

v asthma spacer Just call me Dr. MomThe whining,  the hysterics every time she sneezes, the being up all night because her nose is runny and that is an absolute crisis in her world.

And with every round of being sick has come a round of croup.  Except I don’t think it’s croup.  I think  it’s the start of asthma.

So with this latest round of sickness she’s back on inhalers.

There are a few things you learn very quickly when you have a child who is chronically ill.  That is to trust your instincts, trust that you know your child better than any doctor, and that doctors are not infallible.

I spend a large part of my days, when something new comes up, reading medical journals online.  Researching, cross referencing, eliminating possibilities.

When Vista was little, and her doctors insisted that she was fine and just slow to develop because she was a preemie, this research got them to agree to do an MRI (against their better judgment – they were just humoring me, you understand).   But mother’s instinct didn’t fail me and the doctors were shocked when her scan revealed a brain malformation and missing pieces.

And when I suggested when she was only 3 months old, that she might have a milk allergy, which was summarily dismissed by all her doctors… well, I should have listened to my mother’s instinct then.  By the time she was a year old, her GI specialist grudgingly agreed that she might have an *mild intolerance*.  Months of food diaries and elimination diets revealed a severe milk allergy.  Bad enough that she couldn’t even eat beef and a kiss on the cheek from someone who had just had a drink of coffee with creamer in it would leave an angry red mark on her skin.

Now I’m preparing  to do battle on the asthma front.

This time I have my own experience to draw from, though.

As a kid, I was diagnosed with croup over and over.

I had chronic bronchial infections.  There were years I was on antibiotics 11 months out of the year.

But it wasn’t until I was a teenager that a doctor finally shook his head, handed me an inhaler, and sent me for asthma testing, which confirmed  the diagnosis.

See, the problem was, even in the midst of an asthma attack, I don’t get the tell tale bronchial spasms that are what most doctors use to diagnose asthma.

After Vista’s coughing attack at Christmas that left her breathless and blue, we found out she doesn’t get bronchial spasms either. But the attack she had was a carbon copy of what my asthma attacks used to be like.

So, now, once again I am researching, reading, and preparing to make my case before the judge doctor.

I Need A Holiday From the Holidays

I have a few more posts coming in my relationship series, but I need to put them aside for a bit while I figure out how to proceed.  Like I said earlier, the posts aren’t writing themselves, like I’m used to, and with V being sick I simply can’t focus like I need to on such a touchy topic.  So you guys will just have to suck it up and wait.  Bloggers prerogative and all that.  Sorry.

So, Christmas.

Yeah… that was interesting.

We did end up successfully doing our 12 days of Christmas with Vista.  It worked well and allowed her time to process each toy.

We still had a few presents on Christmas morning and then her stocking.  That took 3 hours to open everything, but we let her go at her own speed.  Even that, though, was too overwhelming and she was pretty much in constant meltdown from noon on Christmas day on.  By the time she went to bed that night Bil and I were completely done in.  In a serious way.  I think next year we might just skip Christmas day, altogether.

The 26th we briefly considered hitting the Boxing Day sales, then came to our senses.

Bil’s assesment of the day ahead:

bilxmas I Need A Holiday From the Holidays

He was kidding…. I think…

After spending the morning dealing with cranky mccranky pants (aka our daughter) we figured the sooner we headed over to my parents the sooner we could make them look after her and we could sit and have a break.  Cause we’re awesome parental units like that.  So, we packed up the big pickup truck *cough* rednecks *cough* and hit the highway.

Vista had a bit of a cold and cough and we had another croup flare up in the days before Christmas.  We decided we would take her into our family doc in the new year as this is her 3rd go round with ‘croup’ in a month in a half.  Vista, however, had a different plan.

As we left our house to make the hour drive to my parents house when Vista started coughing…and coughing… and coughing… and oh fuck… she can’t catch her breath.  Do we pull over and call an ambulance or gun it to the nearest medical facility?  We veered off the highway and took the back roads the Urgent Care facility in the next town.

As we rushed from the truck into the medical center, Vista’s cough had slowed enough that she was at least not blue tinged anymore.  I had flashbacks to my own experiences with croup as a child.  These coughing attacks were eventually diagnosed as my signature asthma attack.  Yay genes.

And we walked into see a huge line of people.  Crap.  The debate.  Head back to the hospital ER in our town, stay here, or take her into the Children’s hospital in the city.  We decided to take our chances and wait it out here. I called my mom and told her we’d probably be a bit late for dinner.

However, when you walk in with a coughing child with dropping pulse-ox stats a funny thing happens.  You get bumped to the front of the line and get to see a doctor right away.  Two inhalers and instructions to follow up with our family doctor later and we were on our way again.  So much for making it through the holidays without a visit to emergency.  Vista is nothing if not consistent.

When we finally got to my parents house, my dad took Vista and my mom went and made me a stiff drink.  Because there are some days when it’s required and my mom, for all her quirks, gets that.

My youngest brother and his wife finally arrived with my nephew (how we can come from an hour away AND stop at emerg and still get to my parents house ahead of them when they live in the same neighborhood as my parents, I’ll never understand).  I had the sad realization that my nephew who’s now a year and half old isn’t a baby anymore.  *sniff*  He’s completely lost that cute, chubby, baby look and marched straight into toddlerhood.  I told my SIL that she needed to get with the program and have another baby for me to cuddle.   Because, really,  we all know it’s always all about me.

After required snuggles, we let the kids open their presents from Grandma and Grandpa (or Manna and Putta as Vista prefers to call them.  We’ve tried to correct that.  And she can say it properly.  But she’s adamant about those names.  *shrug*).  Can we say spoiled?  I think my parents went and won the lottery and forgot to tell us.  They even got Vista a gift certificate to the high end shoe store where we have to get her footwear, so her next pair of shoes are completely paid for.  Yeah, I may have teared up a bit over a gift certificate to a shoe store.  Just proves that I’m sensitive.

Heading back home in a semi-turkey induced-coma, we had to pull off on the highway again after V had another coughing / asthma attack.  Nothing wakes you up and gets your adrenaline pumping like your kid having trouble breathing.  Thank goodness for rescue inhalers.  But since then, she’s been good and we haven’t needed to use it at all. So, yay the inhalers are working.  Boo that they’re probably working because she has asthma.

All in all a good Christmas.  But really?  I am SO ready for a holiday now.

I’ll leave you with this daily dose of cuteness… Vista the ballerina (oh, and yes, she insists on wearing a toque in the house at all times.  And usually mittens too.  We got her to take off the mittens to open presents, but the toque?  Not a chance.  I promise you, we keep the heat on in the house.  Really.)

 I Need A Holiday From the Holidays

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