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Failure To Thrive


*I couldn’t read this back so there’s probably mistakes galore. And, sorry it’s so long.

Just typing this first sentence sends me into a panic from thinking about a terrifying moment one morning back in July. It’s been the main reason I had lost any interest in most things, including this blog. But things have been building inside my head and I need to be rid of them.

I’ve talked in the past about the hypoglycemic episodes we’ve had with my 6 year-old. Within 24 hours of her being born, she was rushed to the NICU for low blood sugar which was in its teens.

The hummingbird was taken off of medication within 2 months of being born and we thought that was the last of dealing with hypoglycemia.

Two years later, I went to get her up one morning and she was still sleeping, which was unusual. I woke her and while I was picking her up, she started twitching and crying while having spasms. She has never gone into a full-blown seizure though.

With each hypoglycemic episode she’s had over the years, there have been some where we could still treat her at home with honey and juice, and some where we would need to go to the emergency room. There were times where she would be released from the ER within 6-8 hours and other times when her blood sugar wouldn’t regulate and kept dropping to scary levels so she would have to be admitted for 1-2 weeks.

To this day, I worry 24/7 I worry about the possibility of her having a low blood sugar episode. Several of her episodes have been when she was sick but then there have been some episodes that have just come out of the blue.

The little bird has had so many tests and been to so many doctors but at the time, they didn’t seem to have many answers as to what was causing this. Also, the bird is small for her age so the specialists we’ve seen believed that there was another underlying issue but hadn’t been able to figure it out.

So, to be honest, I can feel like a wreck most days with the worry of whether or not she’s going to eat enough to keep her blood sugar up. She’s also very athletic and since she’s such a picky eater with not much of an appetite, that makes the worry and stress overwhelming at times.

We always make sure to have snacks with us wherever we go in case she may start showing signs of hypoglycemia. There have been times she had been so low upon waking up that we needed something much quicker to get the sugar into her because she can be very dazed and can’t follow simple instructions.

I usually dip my finger in honey and start wiping it on her lips and thankfully she has always responded to that by getting to where she can take it from a spoon. It’s probably only been a few minutes when dealing with these low blood sugar episodes but it feels like time stands still.

The bird didn’t have any severe episodes for a while and after we started seeing her most recent specialist, for the first time I’ve felt like I can ease up on the worry a tiny bit and I welcomed that.

When we go to her specialist, I cringe when I hear him say “failure to thrive”. It’s something we’ve been hearing over the years and I know it’s because of how small she is. She’s 6 but about the size of a 4 year-old. Hearing failure to thrive makes me fell like a failure as a parent even though I know we do our best. She’s just not a big eater.

Over the summer, my husband booked a cabin where we had stayed the previous year. It was really cool for us since living in Maine for the past few years, this was the first place we’ve lived where we’ve been here long enough to start traditions with our daughter.

We were also celebrating our 100th wedding anniversary in July so I was actually more excited than I was the previous year we went camping. And, yes. I think staying in a cabin is camping and that’s as close to “outdoorsy” as I’ll get.

I’m certain my kid was a fish in another life because she can swim for hours, which is what she and the husband did for the first few days.

We were all having a really great time, despite being a human mosquito buffet for 4 days and missing the comfort of my couch. My 6 year-old was eating pretty good and we were reconnecting as a family so I felt like I was finally able to unwind on our little vacation.

I promised her that we could sleep in the same bed the last few nights, which is a treat for her. I think it may have been my husband walking out of the bathroom that woke me up early that morning but within a few seconds, I felt the hummingbird twitching violently in the bed.

I took her in my arms to try and see if she was coherent but right away I saw that she was having a full-blown seizure. I want to throw up after typing that because all of the fear comes flooding back from that moment. I called to my husband to grab some honey but we found we didn’t have any. In fact, we only had things she would be able to drink, like juice, to help her get her blood sugar up but she was way past the point of being capable of drinking anything.

While I still had her in my arms, my husband rushed back with some strawberry jam that I started rubbing around her lips but she couldn’t even take that. That was the moment her eyes went into the back of her head and the hummingbird went limp. I feel terrible for even having this cross my mind at the time but I really thought the worst, I thought this was it. We had never experienced her in such a terrible state and I went in a state of shock, all while calling her name and trying to get her to come to.

She was throwing up before she lost consciousness so the jam I was able to get into her just came back up. The panic set in since she wasn’t responding and during this whole time, my husband was trying to get cell reception which was non-existent. The hummingbird started to show some signs of coming to… after what seemed like ages when in reality this episode was maybe about a few minutes. It’s strange how time seems to go in slow motion in an incident like this.

I was finally able to give her more strawberry jam on her lips and she was able to lick it off her lips but she still wasn’t responding to anything we said and in a daze. Understandably. The jam was all over the bed and the two of us were covered in it.

We knew we had to get her to the ER but since we were in the middle of nowhere and not familiar with the area, it made a very terrifying situation even worse. My husband found that the nearest hospital was over 45 minutes away and we had to rush the decision of what to do and decided it would be faster to take her to the hospital.

The hummingbird was still throwing up and in between, she started to accept the strawberry jam I was feeding her with my fingers. It was the car drive that lasted what felt like forever. We finally made it to the ER and thankfully, the little bird was in a much better state but my adrenaline was pumping like crazy and I still felt like I was going to throw up my heart.

They told us that her blood sugar was still pretty low at that point and we spent the next six hours there. This episode with her low blood sugar and seizure left my husband and I stunned but we had actually handled it more calmly than previous times with her hypoglycemia.

Reality hit me after a few hours while I was sitting beside my 6 year-old’s bedside. Seeing my child in that kind of medical emergency for the first time when it came to her seizure has honestly fucked me up. Feeling completely helpless while she had been lying in my arms and thinking the worst has guaranteed that my heart will never go back into my chest again.

I was asking the ER doctor all sorts of questions about seizures and having confirmation that there is absolutely nothing that you can do while someone has one made me angry. I felt that this is my child that I protect and love more than anything, yet I just have to let her ride it out was bullshit. I was irrationally angry about it for quite a while. It made the every day stress of dealing with her hypoglycemia shoot up with thoughts of not only dealing with her symptoms of low blood sugar but that now seizures were something that she might experience again.

When we went to see her specialist within the week, he told us that the chance of her having another seizure was high for the next two weeks and it was two weeks of hell. I didn’t want her to leave my sight. We are really lucky that she has the doctor she does because he is fantastic and has this soothing way about him. Although, after that visit, I was on edge.

To help the hummingbird’s blood sugar stay stable over the night, her doctor has us add a few tablespoons of uncooked cornstarch in yogurt that we give my daughter as a snack before bed. The cornstarch helps slows the digestion of what she eats and so far, she hasn’t had any episodes of hypoglycemia since. We’ve been back to her doctor for a second time and it seems like she’s doing much better with the addition of cornstarch. She’s even gaining a little more weight.

There have still been times since that we felt the need to check her blood sugar if she’s acting unusually tired and yes, that weird noise you may have heard a few weeks ago was probably my kid screaming at the top of her lungs. She still hates getting it checked and my heart breaks every time.

I’ve been teaching her more about nutrition and how important it is for everyone, especially for her because of these episodes she has. Things are sinking in for her that while candy is a treat, it’s so important to make healthier choices with food, like sliced avocado or cashews with craisans.

Every day I still feel like I’m teetering over the edge with the worry that this day may be the day her blood sugar takes a dive. It’s not easy when my anxiety already eats at me as it is. I just want to hug every parent out there who also has kids who have a health condition. And then sit down with a big glass of wine and a very loud ‘cheers’ because parenting isn’t easy.

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Long time, no see. I took an unexpected break since I went into an awful funk back in March. Depression pretty much body slammed me and put me in a headlock for a bit. It was being such a dick but I’m slowly climbing out of the hole I was in.

With my 6 year-old being on summer break and the chaos of moving last month and endless unpacking, I haven’t had much time… to pull my ass away from marathons of The Walking Dead and the delicious show, UnReal.

I’m hoping to get back into the swing of things once the hummingbird goes back to school in a few weeks. When she started kindergarten last year, I was freaking the hell out because Oh my god, my baby is growing up!!! But now, I’m counting down the days until she starts 1st grade.

I want to break out the hard liquor, get some glow sticks, and have myself a dance party on that glorious day.

Who am I kidding? I’m going to cry like a fucking baby because Oh my god, my baby is growing up!!!

I came across this video with Joseph Gordon-Levitt and it is glorious. “I’m sorry I ruffled your duvet but I had to work on that bootay”.


What were you up to this summer? Has your sanity been hanging by a thread from summer vacation?

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Hyperemesis Gravidarum

Since I had hyperemesis gravidarum with my first pregnancy, with the little hummingbird, I’ve called it “that Harry Potter sounding spell”. I’ve since had it with each pregnancy and let me say this.

It is NOT “bad morning sickness”.

HG isn’t anywhere in the same category. One of the ways that I’ve tried to describe it to my husband is that it’s like comparing a paper cut on your finger to breaking your hand.

I much rather refer to hyperemesis gravidarum as extreme pregnancy sickness. Not that morning sickness is a walk in the park but HG is horrible and something I wouldn’t wish on anyone.

While I was thankfully never hospitalized for it, last year when I was pregnant, it was agony for many months. The only thing that I could really keep down was iced tea lemonade and I remember how my ob/gyn became really concerned when I lost over 10 pounds in just a few weeks.

As far as my experience with it, something as simple as water is completely and utterly repulsive when you have HG. Even smelling water was horrible. Yes, water had a smell to me.

Sounds and movement even aggravate HG. Like when I would lay on the couch and my daughter would hop around by me. I would be in agony. Or I would still be in bed and my husband would be talking to the hummingbird and his deep voice would seem amplified and actually make me sick.

Hyperemesis gravidarum is like when you drink too much and get the spins and say “I’m never drinking again”. But instead, you have this awful motion sickness feeling 24/7 for several months.

Pregnancy should be such a happy time. Being excited about seeing the beautiful life that you’ve created and hopeful when it comes to the future with your child.

Every single day, I felt like I wanted to die when it came to having HG. Sure, I thought I would die because of how sick I felt. But at times, I would think being dead would be much better than dealing with the day-to-day sickness that was completely overwhelming when it comes to having hyperemesis gravidarum.

The so-called “happy time” in my life was such a nightmare for me. I tried everything possible to help with this awful pregnancy sickness. I’m allergic to the more common anti-nausea medication but would take another kind and still, it did very little to ease the HG.

Nothing helped my issue with hyperemesis gravidarum.

I have given so much thought when it comes to having another child because of dealing with hyperemesis gravidarum. It’s truly the hardest decision I’ve had to make. Especially with having a 6 year-old to care for.

Despite wanting to have another child more than anything in the world, having HG with my last pregnancy was more brutal than the previous times and that concerns me.

Time is ticking away to try one last time. I’ve been trying to convince myself that it will be perfectly fine if I just have one child. It makes me feel ungrateful at times to want another, especially when so many people go through heartache and many years to try for a baby.

But honestly, I long to have another child… even if it means my head will be in the toilet for 9 months.

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I’m Not Really Sure What I’m Trying To Say Or If I Even Have A Point So, I Guess It’s Like Anything Else I Write On Here

Obviously, I haven’t been as dedicated to my blog in the last year as I was for the first 4 years. And I’ve been trying to figure out why because I really miss it. I’m still writing but not on here very often. But the other week it hit me. It’s self-doubt, among some other things.

Yes, I may sound like a whiny bitch but when I came across some things last summer about people doubting I was ever pregnant with my son that I lost last year or if I’m even a mom at all what the fuckity fuck?!, that just put a bad taste in my mouth when it comes to writing on my blog and over sharing. I just felt like “fuck this”. I know I’m way too sensitive but it’s hard to accept that there are people like that out there. If I read something I don’t like on a blog, I move on and don’t rip that person to shreds. Especially since there are a billion other blogs to read.

No, not everyone has to love me or what I write but damn, I openly share these things about myself because not only do I feel better when I’m so open… it’s kind of like therapy, I know what it feels like to think you’re the only person out there who’s going through depression, anxiety, the what the fucks of parenting and motherhood, and figuring out what the hell is up with this husband guy I live with and his never ending snoring and grinding of his teeth and lack of talking or talking too much when I have that special one night a year to enjoy The Oscars and the butthead talks all the way through the ceremony and I want to punch him in the balls. Really, hubby? Really? You rarely talk as it is but talk nonstop the one time of year when I’d prefer your usual silence??

So, yeah. I used to think my blog was a safe haven in a way but since last year, I worry about anything I may write and what may possibly be picked apart elsewhere.

But I know I should say fuck it. This type of thing comes along with the territory although knowing there’s a site out there specifically to rip apart women bloggers is unsettling.

The grief I’ve been experiencing more and more from the loss of Ben has also had such an effect on my desire to write. His first birthday would have been June 4th and the closer that date comes, the harder it is to get my ass out of bed and somehow function as best as I can.

We also recently found out that while we have one more year in Maine, the owners are coming back this summer and we have just a few months to find a house, pack, and move by July. And since my husband will be retiring from the Navy next summer, we then have to move again to what we hope will be our permanent home somewhere on the west coast.

I’ve logged into my blog many times to write about each of these things but since knowing that whatever I write may be put under a microscope by others and judged, it sucks. And to be blunt, it’s very hurtful.

But then I think there may still be those who actually read what I write because they like it. At least I hope they do. And that’s exactly who I should put my focus on.

It’s so true how you can have people say 10 positive things about you but it’s the one negative thing that will be what sticks out in your mind.

I need to stop thinking about those who will always have negative things to say or may hate read my blog.

I need to go back to writing the way I used to. Writing without having all of this self-doubt about how others will perceive it.

Fun little fact… I took an Ambien an hour ago so if this doesn’t make a smidgen of sense, there you go!

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1 Year

It’s been a year since we lost Ben. He would have been 9 months old. I find it hard not to think about how life would be if he was in it.

He would have an adoring older sister who would give him plenty of attention, love, and lots of kisses.

He would be crawling and using one of the cats as a chew toy.

He would have that adorably adorable drool dripping smile.

He would have irresistible chubby baby legs.

For the longest time I was internalizing the grief. But last week I started thinking about him and just sat where I had been standing and was crying for the longest time.

Even though we were supposed to box these up months ago, his clothes are still in my bottom dresser drawer. His crib bedding and swaddling blankets are still in the office closet.

My head is telling me it’s time to accept it and put away his things.

My heart is telling me it’s not ready.

*Just Breathe

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And Why Is This A Problem?!

So, I get stuck with depression, anxiety, panic attacks, social anxiety, and seasonal affective disorder.

But these women get stuck with too many orgasms, most which don’t require sex.

I was flipping through the channels the other night and came hahaha across this show.

Really, now? Really?!

Just think of all the money you would save on Ben and Jerry’s ice cream to get a similar effect.


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Thank You

I’ve been having a really tough week with depression and even though you may not know it, I wanted to say how much I thank you, all of you, who reads my nonsensical writing.

Taking the time out in your busy day to read my blog is something I greatly appreciate, more than I can put into words.

For the past 4 years, you have helped me deal with issues just by me being able to write about them and I hope in some small way, I have helped at least someone out there by being so honest with my feelings.

I know so well what it’s like to feel alone… different from others. So, the thought of possibly having even one person feel more “normal” helps me. Needless to say, I don’t like to sugarcoat things for that reason.

If you ever feel even the tiniest inclination to reach out to me for any reason, to vent or just write to feel better, ANY REASON at all, whether or not we are strangers, please don’t hesitate to email me….

I’ll be there to listen. If it takes me time to answer, know that I’m crazy busy or scatterbrained… as usual.

So, in my usual long-winded way, THANK YOU! <3

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