Monday, January 6, 2014

I Got 2 Tickets to Paradise

Tomorrow Lennon will be 2 years old... it is so hard to believe two years ago I was being admitted into the hospital after what I thought was essentially indigestion.  Two years ago, I was asking friends to watch Van until we could get home to him.  Two years ago, I was talking to the pediatric nurse about the "what-ifs" and possible complications for my yet-to-be-born baby...  Seems like a lifetime ago!  Yet, I still have anxiety every time we go into Rex Hospital.  It is really crazy to think of how scary her start was when I look at her now!!

Over the last two years, Lennon has grown from a tiny, non-sleeping, bouncing-loving baby to a all-too-opinionated, funny, little version of me.  She is talking more and more each day, arguing with her brother, and standing her ground.  Lennon is now in a big girl bed, eating regular table foods, and experiencing all of the "firsts" any other 2 year old would be experiencing; including hearing the word "no" more and more!  We survived not only a move into a new house, but a major remodel of said new house.  We also added a new dog to the mix... we must be insane!  It has been a bit hectic for the Yarbrough clan.  I wanted to share a couple of our best memories from the last two years of life with Lennon...
First Durham Bulls Game

Last summer, we went through her final developmental evaluation.  To say she passed with flying colors would be an understatement.  Lennon not only passed, but she showed her true self :-)  The intern performing the assessments was not prepared for what Lennon was about to dish out.  Initially Lennon was placed in a high chair.  She was asked to put puzzle pieces in their right place.  Lennon half way did the task.  The lady asked her to do it again...  Lennon tossed the pieces off the edge of the high chair.  The lady asked her a third time, at which point Lennon shook her head no and literally threw the pieces across the room.  The senior psychologist came in when she could tell the intern was getting irritated.  The senior psychologist gave Lennon a baby and a cup.  She asked Lennon to give the baby a drink, to which Lennon responded, "bottle?" and held her hand out.  Clearly, the child was confused as to why a baby would be drinking out of a grown up cup!  Lennon scored at the top of her range for everything except receptive language... to which I argue she absolutely understood what was being asked of her, but said no :-) 
I do what I want!

Last summer also lead us to our first beach trip.  Lennon loved the beach!  She ate tons of sand, loved to be buried, and loved to go out into the water.  No fear of the water in this child!  The highlight was listening to her sing "I'm the Map" at bedtime.  Very sweet!

Lennon is a bit of a ham... over the last two years, she has developed a deep love for dancing and singing.  This makes me so happy!  Twinkle, Twinkle is our favorite song, but she will dance to ANYTHING; commercials, TV, radio, or someone's phone ring tone.  As long as there is music, she is happy. 
Singing Twinkle, Twinkle at one of daddy's Duke Games

Lennon and Van love each other and play well together, generally speaking.  Just today they were taking turns throwing a silly little ball down the stairs and running after it.  They have started to play chase and Lennon loves to torment poor Van and Rosa.  Van has been a great big brother and wants to spend time with Lennon.  He and I have movie night, but recently he has been asking for Lennon to stay up and do movie night with us.  Very sweet brother!  However, they also cause mischief together too... Today, Lennon managed to convince her brother to "steal" her an apple while I was out of the room after being told no... I guess an apple is better than candy!
Poor Rosa!
I have apple-thieves in my house!

However much Lennon is growing to be a mini-me, she is definitely a daddy's girl!  She will snuggle and watch football with dad, give him hugs and kisses, and really plays with him more.  She loves to make him laugh and he is one of the few people who can truly make her giggle.  They have an amazing bond with each other!  I know this is probably going to cost me a lot of money in the long run ;-)
Loving Daddy at Hillridge Farms

I guess to wrap all this up, I will just post some great photos of the last couple of years...  I keep thinking I should keep up with this blog better, but let's face it, with a full time job and 2 little ones at home, it is probably not going to happen too often :-) 
 First Birthday!  Girl has a sweet tooth!
 First Visit with Santa... surprisingly no tears as of yet!
 Climbing like a monkey with Van on the "big kids" side of the park
 First Pedi courtesy of Aunt Sara and Aunt Wendy.
 First picnic.  Van set it all up himself because he wanted to eat with Lennon :)
 Go Pack!!
 Lennon is stingy with the kisses.  She must really love her "bruder Ban-Ban" (as she calls him!)
 Wreaking havoc while seeing Judy's wedding site
 Watching a little cartoons with her "Banket"  - no there is not supposed to be an L in that
 Swim time!
 Naptime with Ban-Ban
 Van showing Lennon how to play with his power rangers
 learning all about flowers... through taste?
 Tummy time with BFF
An early pic of Lennon... she was so tiny!
Van got his first Bike!!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Future's so Bright I Gotta Wear Shades

I know I haven't written in a while so I will try to be better about that.  It is not easy working full time with 2 kids and a hubby that works nights.  By the time they are in bed, I am about to pass out myself!

Today was a pretty big day for the Yarbrough family.  Lennon had her first appointment at the developmental clinic.  I was a nervous wreck.  I know she is doing great considering where she started, but any time your child is getting assessed by professionals, it is terrifying!  I was scared that my radar was off and that they were going to come back and tell me something was up either with her physically or developmentally.  I was scared because I am not used to being on this side of the assessments.

When we arrived at the clinic, there was the typical paperwork; consents, privacy papers, yada yada yada.  They also had me fill out a medical background form for her and her family.  Then the nurse called us back and asked the same questions.  The thing that irks me is that they had all the paperwork from the special care nursery.  It is not like I was going to give them any new information.  But, I filled it all out.  Redundancy at its finest.

One sweet thing was that the nurses were arguing over who got to take care of Lennon.  It was nice to see that.  The nurses kept talking about how sweet she looked and how cute she is.  I have to agree if I do say so myself!  I just told them that I will have to remember all that they said when I was bouncing on the ball to get her to sleep :-)

The developmental specialist was the first to come in.  She was so sweet!  She played with Lennon and asked me a few questions about Lennon's abilities.  She was surprised to see how wonderful her head control is and how close she is to sitting up without support.  She was amazed at how expressive she is.  Lennon of course ate all this attention up!  She put on a good show for the specialist.

The Developmental Neurologist came in to talk to me about how she is progressing physically.  She is gaining weight, head circumference, and height wonderfully.  She wants to see a bit more weight put on, but lets be honest, is anyone really surprised by that??  She said it was good to see that her nutrition appears to be going to support her brain development.

The neurologist shared with me that Big Wake will be putting in rooms in their NICU to encourage parents to stay overnights.  That would have been awesome when Lennon was still at Rex.  I told her about how Lennon had trouble bottle feeding and how that would have been awesome to be able to stay over and nurse at every feeding.  She said that is one of the main reason she fought for that.

The specialists both agreed that Lennon is meeting or exceeding all expectations at this point.  They do not want to see her for another year unless something drastic changes!  We go back in a year to complete the Bailey Developmental Assessment.

Oh, and we have officially broken into the double digits!  She is 10lbs, 4 oz and 23 inches long!  Grow baby, Grow!!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Don't Worry, Be Happy

Only my closest of friends know this, but right after Lennon was born I had/possibly still have postpartum depression.  It is so tough to say that!  Why is that so hard?  It makes no sense.  I have no problems letting the world know when I am mad, but no one ever wants to admit when they are sad or overwhelmed...  I hope by writing this that I can help someone else not wait as long before getting help!

After Lennon was born, I knew I would be an emotional wreck.  It is just part of having a baby and all the hormones.  I was fine for the first week or so.  I joked with friends and Collin in the hospital, talked with family.  I was a bit excitable, but not really emotional until the last day in the hospital.  

As time went on and Lennon was in the hospital longer and longer, things started to unravel for me.  I was so overwhelmed with trying to stay strong for my son and husband.  I also have always been able to deal with most situations with inappropriate comments and humor.  It has always helped get me through just about anything.  But after about 2-3 weeks, I stopped laughing and joking.  Everything made me angry or cry.  I would flip out over nothing.  All I cared about was getting to the hospital every day to be with Lennon.  Everything else was just going through the motions.  Anything that happened out of the schedule I had established would set me off; even if it was something fun.  

Finally, after going through this for about 2 weeks, I knew I had to do something.  I called my doctor and left a voicemail on the nurse line.  Let me rephrase... I left a blubbering mess on the voicemail.  This was in the car on the way home from the hospital.  I was met in the driveway by the nurse from the health department.  I then proceeded to cry at her too.  Bless her heart... I don't think she was prepared for me that day!  A couple hours later, I got a call back from the nurse at my doctor's office.  She was amazingly patient and caring.  I told her I didn't know if this was normal for a mom of a preemie or if this was depression or what this was.  I never had this with Van, so I didn't see how this could be due to hormones.  She talked to my doctor and got a prescription for meds sent over to the drug store within the hour.  

Once I started on the medication (Zoloft), I realized how bad it really was.  The only way to explain it is how you feel on the first sunny day after a week of rainy days.  I just remember the days feeling so dark and heavy.  Collin said it was like night and day after I started the meds.  He was so relieved to have his wife back. I am sure Van was happier too.  It did not take away my worries or numb my feelings; it proved to be a tool to help me control my emotions and not let them control me.  

If you or someone you know is showing signs of postpartum depression, get help!  Being a new mom is tough enough.  Don't let it be any harder than it has to be!  I am continuing the medication for the time being.  I hope to taper off after my 3 month check up in June.  One of my previous doctors once told me that sometimes we just need the meds to "reset" our emotions and coping mechanisms.  Once you feel more in control, you can do it without the meds.  Hopefully that is the case for me this time too!  

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

I Don't Give a Damn About My Reputation!

So yesterday I started writing a post about what a wonderful young boy Van is turning out to be.  Don't get me wrong... he is a wonderful kid!  But today he reminded us that he is still just a 3 year old boy.

Van goes to an in-home day care with a stay at home mom and her 4 year old son.  Van has been there for about 9 months.  He always has fun there and the lady who keeps him, Stacey, loves having him too.  She always talks about how he is always in a good mood and is a good boy.  Well, today, Van decided to show his not so nice side.

I got a call from Collin around 12:30...  Van threw toys at Stacey's son.  Great.  Have you ever tried to get the truth from a 3 year old?  It is like pulling teeth.  Van told Collin something about Sonny and no sir and hit Gaga (nickname for Stacey's son).  From what we can gather, Van wanted the train (Sonny).  There was a disagreement where Van told Gaga, "No Sir!" (Something I say to him when I am correcting him)..  and from there it progressed to throwing the train at Gaga.  Van was obviously embarrassed by what happened.  When I asked him what happened today, he mumbled at me and then went to stand behind a corner out of my view.  It was really pitiful, but I was relieved to know he understood that he was wrong.  Van said that it was "not nice" and "no throwing."

When it comes to his sister, Van is the sweetest, gentlest child ever.  I have seen more affection from him in the last 6 weeks than he has ever shown to me or Collin.  Van kisses Lennon, shares with her, checks on her when she cries, and already tries to show her things.  It is so cute!

I have a feeling that these two sides of Van will show more fiercely as he gets older.  This should make for some interesting years down the road!  And I cannot wait!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

The Parting Glass

What a wonderful few weeks this has been since I last updated!  I went back to work 2 weeks ago.  It has been strangely easy going back to work.  I thought it would have been much tougher, but I guess the second go-round is much easier.  We have been busy with the big project at work, so I hit the ground running with playing catch up.

Lennon continues to grow and put on weight.  Come to find out, she probably would have been gaining weight a lot faster had the nurse told us the correct amounts of fortifier to add to her bottles... That nurse was an idiot and I should have known better.  I should have read the doctor's notes and not her notes!  If I had to guess, I would say we are around 5lbs now.  But we should know for sure in the next couple of weeks when we go for our next check up.

Nana has been helping us get a routine down while we adjust to our new normal.  She has also been helping keep up with laundry and the cooking which is a huge help!  Van has loved having all her attention too :-)

Today, we went to the St. Paddy's Day Parade.  It was so much fun!  Van was so good.  He watched so much of it and we talked about the different floats and cars.  Lennon stayed wrapped up in the homemade moby wrap and slept just about the whole time.  I overheard one lady drunk whisper (which is really just cupping your hand and yelling) to her friend about the "tiny baby or doll or something in that wrap."  I was cracking up.  Why would the mother of a 3 year old be carrying a doll in a wrap?  Do I look like the crazy type?  haha.

Such a wonderful day!  Could not have asked for a better day with friends and family

Thursday, February 23, 2012

I Can See Clearly Now - Updated with photos!!

This week has been exhausting and amazing!  Lennon came home on Tuesday.  She weighed in at a chunky 4lbs 5oz!  We tried to convince the nurse to wheel Collin down in a wheelchair instead of the mom.  Unfortunately, the nurse denied that request, lol.

Lennon rode great in the car, but apparently it worked up one heck of an appetite!

First meal at home... all 40mls!  Nom nom nom!!

Van walked in from day care and just started asking, "What's this?  Baby cool?"  Van refers to Lennon as his baby.  He wants to hold her all the time and never wants to leave her side.  Van is absolutely in love with her.  First night home, he wanted to hold her.  We compromised.  I put down a blanket in the floor and laid Lennon down there.  Van laid beside her and watched Ice Age (our newest obsession).  Van told Lennon all about the movie and pointed out his favorite parts.  It was one of the cutest things that I have ever seen!  Then, when it was bedtime, Van insisted on Lennon going to bed with him.  He fell asleep with his hand patting her back.  *Sigh* He is the sweetest kid ever.  I know the jealousy will hit eventually, but I figure I will enjoy it while I can!
Van loves taking photos of his new sister!

"Ooh, what's this?  Baby cool?"

Such a sweet boy!

Van is so proud of his baby :-)

Lots of kisses for Lennon

"Look Lennon!  Ice Age!"

Again, Van takes a lot of photos

I love the hand placement on the side of Lennon's head... awww!

Very proud Papa!

We went to our follow up pediatric appt today.  Sure do wish I had known our pediatrician changed offices last year!  I guess it is a good thing that we haven't had to go to the doctor since Van's 2 year check up.  Lennon was still 4lbs 5 oz.  Everything looks good and we are set to go back next Friday for the 2 month check.  Crazy to think we are at 2 months already!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Take Me Home Tonight

Today is the big day!!  Lennon is coming home!  Yesterday, Collin and I went to the 11:30AM feeding in hopes that the doctor would be willing to send her home.  The nurse informed us that Lennon had to have a g-tube feeding overnight, but had taken all of her other feeds well.  I was devastated.  The doctor came in and said that he wanted to watch her for a couple more days.  He changed her feeds to 30mls every 3 hours or 40mls every 4 hours (dependent on when she wakes for food).  He was hoping this would make Lennon more hungry and willing to eat.
The lactation consultant, Sherrie came to help me out since Lennon had not been showing interest in nursing the last couple of weeks.  Of course, Lennon proved me to be a liar and nursed for 20 minutes!  Then, she took 22mls.  They counted it as a full feed!
Collin and I talked it over and since she is nursing so much better than taking a bottle, we felt it would be better for her to come home.  We decided to call Dr. Parsons and Lennon's Home Health Nurse.  Dr. Parson's called the doctor on duty.  They agreed to send her home today!

Last night, we cleaned the house and spent the night having fun with Van.  We decided to celebrate Van's last night of being an "only child."  We talked about going to get Mexican food, but Van piped up from the backseat and asked for hot dogs and french fries.  So we went to Five Guys.  Van was so excited, he ordered his own food and then watched the cooks as they fixed his food.  He was so stinkin' cute about it!

Now that the big day is here, I am a little nervous, but so excited to have Lennon home!  She is 4lbs 5oz.  That is so tiny compared to Van's size when he came home.  It will be different, but we are ready :-)