7 Quick Takes: What’s Been Going On Edition

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

December 18. Daniel had an appointment at the Center for Pediatric Dentistry in Seattle. Verdict: there will be a sedated exam where they can do x-rays, an exam, and a cleaning as well as fix anything that needs to be fixed. This is pretty much exactly what I expected. The dental resident we saw was incredibly good, and I think he’ll be an amazing pediatric dentist when he is done training.

— 2 —

December 19. We had a hearing loss clinic appointment at Seattle Children’s. Some idiot (me) forgot to give Daniel his Adderall before we left, and this made being stuck with him in an exam room for FOUR HOURS (!!!) really fun. We saw speech therapists, an otolaryngologist, an educational specialist, and a genetic counselor.

The genetic counselor was the only one telling us something we didn’t already know — she explained the genetic abnormality that causes his autism, ADHD, and learning disability… and it turns out that Seattle Children’s has a clinic for it. The providers there hadn’t ever seen Daniel’s genetic report before that day, so the genetic counselor was like a kid in a candy store because there were SOOOOOO many cool things in it, enough that she is still studying it and figuring things out. Woohoo.

Also… the genetic abnormality is inherited from a parent (70%) or present when the baby is forming (30%). In other words, all those who claim that vaccines cause autism can shut your pieholes because YOUR ARGUMENT IS INVALID.

— 3 —

December 22. My evil twin, The Girl (his wife), and my nephew Braden arrived. Braden is still cute and a total flirt. He also didn’t want to let his parents sleep and got mouthy (as only a 6 month old can) at midnight, letting them know about his displeasure.

— 4 —

December 23. The evil twin woke up with his eyes red and drippy. He hauled butt to Urgent Care while I was at church, and the nice PA diagnosed him with “ninja pink eye”. Thus began his regimen of having to put nasty ointment in his eyes, wash his hands every time he touched his face, and apply enough hand sanitizer that his hands started to look as bad as mine. Because I am a nice sister, I dug through my collection of hand gels and found the only one that wasn’t pink to give to him. (My favorite scent is Apple and the Walgreens version is either neon green or pink.)

— 5 —

December 24. My little cherub woke up with a rash spreading on his face that my mom thought might be impetigo. Because I am an obedient daughter (and because it was my mommy’s birthday), I tossed clothes on and headed to the closest Urgent Care with the shortest wait time. I was remarking to the triage nurse that Daniel hates being in small rooms (as to why he was flipping out), and she asked if we wanted to wait in the waiting area that has floor-to-ceiling windows and an open plan. (I almost kissed her feet.) The nice nurse practitioner in the elf onesie (no, I am not kidding) said it was *PROBABLY* not impetigo, but the treatment she wanted to do would take care of it if it was. We now have goop to put on his face three times a day until the 3rd. Fun.

Once I got home, got a feed into my sweet child, and got his antibiotics, I made my mama a batch of these cookies as her birthday cake. Because I am awesome. Also… I had to be at church at 6:30 for choir and was going to be ditching her birthday dinner, so they were my apology. (Dicing the rings of sweetened dried pineapples with Mom’s kitchen scissors also probably worked off some time from Purgatory.)

Church was awesome… of course.

— 6 —

December 25. We had 15 people at the house for an early Christmas dinner. T’was epic… with some amazing ham, potatoes, some veggie dishes that I avoided, and two kinds of cheesecake for dessert (white chocolate peppermint for the win!). The Evil Twin, The Girl, and The Nephew headed home.

Mom and I decided to just stare at walls for a few hours… because lots of people + introverts = brain 404.

— 7 —

December 27. The kidlet and I were invited to go to my fairy godmother’s house for lunch with my parents, but I decided to skip it because her house isn’t Daniel-friendly and I needed a day of quiet in between two doctor days. (We had his ADHD appointment yesterday morning with his regular pediatrician and tomorrow is sleep medicine in Bellevue.) We got me coffee, wrote thank-you notes, went to the grocery store, and had a chill day. No regrets on skipping lunch at all!

For more Quick Takes, visit Kelly at This Ain’t The Lyceum.

7 Quick Takes: G-Tube Questions Edition

7 Quick Takes

Daniel has had his G-tube for four months now, so I thought I would answer some of the questions I have gotten from people about it.

— 1 —

How easy is it to change the tube? I have only done one change (November 9th, three months post-surgery), and I had a nurse giving me instructions. Having said that, it took maybe 5 minutes at most. It is held in place with a balloon under the skin that has 6 ml of water in it. To change it, we draw the water out with a syringe, pull the tube out, put a new tube in (that has been lubricated), and then refill the balloon with 6 ml of new water. Insurance only pays for four tubes per year, so this is a quarterly occurrence at most.

— 2 —

What does it look like? This is the closed version.

Daniel's G-tube

This is open:

Daniel's G-tube open.

This is with the feeding extension in place:

Daniel's G-tube with the feeding extension in place.

— 3 —

Does it gross you out to have to work with it? Not really. After 9 1/2 years of being Daniel’s mom, I’m used to bodily fluids. The only really gross part (for me, at least) is when scabby material builds up around it (stomach contents and stuff), and scabs don’t freak me out. Even if it did gross me out, I’d have to suck it up because I’m his parent and have to take care of him.

— 4 —

Do your parents help at all? Mom helps me by holding his hands when I’m having to put ointment on it or when I have to clean around the opening on his abdomen, but I do everything else otherwise. From about Day 2 onward, I had to do feedings in the hospital with nurses watching and helping if needed, so I’m used to it and maybe have to interact with the tube for 30 seconds per feeding.

If I were to know that I would be gone for a couple days for surgery or something, Mom would learn how to do stuff but her preference is that he would take his calories by mouth. She’d probably give him milk with heavy whipping cream in it a couple times a day and whatever else he wanted to eat. (He likes strong cheeses like Swiss or sharp cheddar.)

— 5 —

Does he object to you working with it? He doesn’t like having it manipulated too much (he’s non-verbal so I don’t know if it’s painful or if it’s a weird sensation), but he’s fine with me attaching the feeding extension to it. Cleaning around it is probably not comfortable, but he’s getting better about it.

— 6 —

What do you give him through his tube? There are parents who blend their own foods and places online where you can buy blenderized diet stuff, but I stick to the Boost Kids Essentials 1.5 stuff we were given in the hospital. Insurance pays for everything (his feed bags, feeding extensions, syringes, formula, etc.) so I just call the Home Health department at Seattle Children’s Hospital when I need more of something. You can get the formula on Amazon.Com as well and a case of it (27 juice boxes) costs around $60.

If I have to, I can also give him medication through his tube. The only medication of his that doesn’t work that way is his Adderall ER which has to be given by mouth. (The beads in the capsule can’t be pulverized and the capsule is what does the extended release.) Otherwise, I use a syringe for liquid meds and crush pills up to mix in water to give with the syringe. There’s even a special port on the feeding extension for medication.

— 7 —

How does the food get into the tube? Some people do syringe feeds, and others use gravity bags (the bag hangs above the opening and you control the droplet rate, letting gravity do the work). Seattle Children’s Hospital has a pump that we rent on a monthly basis (insurance deals with them directly so I have no idea what the rent is per month), and we use that. It’s not complicated to use, and I had to learn how to use it without problems before they discharged us from the hospital. (Home Health came and worked with me for an hour before the first hands-on feeding I did.) The formula gets poured into a bolus (the plastic IV bag) and the particular feed bag we use is manufactured for the pump, so it has some special tubing attached that fits into the pump. I can prime it with my fingers if I have to (and do a little bit that way to get the air out of the bolus), but I usually just hold down the prime button on the pump to get it all the way through the tubing before I attach it to Daniel.

For more Quick Takes, visit Kelly at This Ain’t The Lyceum.

7 Quick Takes: Why I’m Tired Edition

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

It’s my Friday. I work Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday. It was a pretty intense week because finals have been released and students are panicking. I can’t help any of them other than pointing out what they are allowed to use if they get stuck. Thankfully, one of the instructors was present on campus today and her office is right off my classroom. She chose to give one person a lot of help, which is great — it’s her final, not mine.

— 2 —

My child is communicating in shrieks this week. We’re really hoping the bio-behavioral therapy people get us in sooner than later.

— 3 —

I’m not sleeping well. Between the cold messing with my arthritis and having an IBS flare-up this week, sleep has eluded me.

— 4 —

I’ve been trying to get some internship hours. My internship paperwork is due tomorrow. Thankfully, I got all of my hours done and submitted my paperwork this afternoon.

— 5 —

My bed keeps breaking. IKEA has crappy bed design, and the slats keep jumping out of track.

— 6 —

I’ve been worrying about one of my students. She was having contractions and coughing up a lung last week. She sounded better on Tuesday, and they induced her today. Thankfully, her daughter is here and they are doing very well. 🙂

— 7 —

I keep having things in the mornings. Kiddo has a hearing aid fitting tomorrow morning and then I have Finance Committee. I have to be out the door at 7:30 a.m. Oh freaking joy.

For more Quick Takes, visit Kelly at This Ain’t The Lyceum.

7 Quick Takes: Things That Make Me Stabby Edition

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

Special needs blogging Kelly talked posed the question of why you should start a special needs blog. I’ve actually done some.

— 2 —

Things that are making me stabby #1. I’m seeing more and more blogs who have pop-ups advertising their newsletters. It’s obnoxious, and most of them are not blogs that are big enough to really need one. Not to mention, stuff like that belongs on a sidebar and there are a ton of widgets that let you do it.

— 3 —

Things that are making me stabby #2. I’m hearing more and more from parents about “getting” their children into college. 20 years ago when I was applying, *I* did everything except maybe sign certain parts of the application if they needed a signature of a parent and pay the application fees. I filled out all my paperwork, got the letters of recommendation, wrote the essays, etc. All of my classmates did too.

When parents “get” their children into college, I wind up with students who are functionally useless in tutoring and who have no clue as to how to talk to an instructor, plan out their schedule, or do much of anything adult-related. Please, I beg you, MAKE YOUR KIDS DO THEIR OWN APPLICATIONS, FILL OUT THEIR OWN RESIDENTIAL LIFE INFORMATION, AND FILL OUT THEIR OWN FAFSAS. My friends who are instructors, professors, res life people, and college staff concur.

— 4 —

Things that are making me stabby #3. Daniel has a whine that sounds like a dog whining… and he’s been doing it all day.

My child, I love you but KNOCK IT OFF!!!!!

— 5 —

Things that are making me stabby #4. My favorite subreddit just had an explosion and a bunch of people who were banned for legit reasons are now dancing on the wreckage. I’m really hoping the mods ban them across every possible sub for the crap they’re pulling in the wake of this.

— 6 —

Things that make me stabby #6. I’ve had a couple students come in and try to make me troubleshoot things with the testing software on their laptops. When I’ve told them that they need to use the desktops in the lab, they’ve had hissy fits and told me that their instructor TOLD them to come to me and make me fix it.

Witch, please. Do you think your instructor and I don’t discuss these things?!?!? I know full well that your instructor told you to use the computers in the classroom in which you are sitting because those computers are less likely to trip up the testing software than your laptop is. That’s been what instructors have told students for the two years I’ve been here. Oh and by the way? You could have also FINISHED your assignment in the time you just spent yelling at me.

— 7 —

Things that make me stabby #6. People who send you an admin question and then ping you every 5 minutes to see if you’ve spoken with the other admins. It’s like a complete surprise that it *MIGHT* take me 24 hours to get back to them.

For more Quick Takes, visit Kelly at This Ain’t The Lyceum.

The Simple Woman’s Daybook: October 8, 2018

For Today… October 8, 2018

Simple Woman's Daybook

Looking out my window… dark. It rained all day.

I am thinking… about my drop-in tutoring hours today. I dealt with cranky SNAP assessments and tutoring a class I didn’t enjoy taking. I love my job, but it was a tiring day.

I am thankful… for the tutoring students who didn’t leave their SNAP assessments until the last minute or who didn’t make me deal with SNAP at all today. (Can you tell what I spent most of my drop-in hours doing today?)

One of my favorite things… students using “please” and “thank-you” and respecting my boundaries on when I will answer questions outside of drop-in tutoring hours.

I am wearing… jammies.

I am creating… plot things for NaNo.

I am listening to… silence.

I am hoping… to get as much Keychamp done tomorrow as possible.

I am learning… how much I suck at typing with fingers on the correct keys.

In my kitchen… Greek chicken from Trader Joe’s.

In the school room… Daniel loves school. School loves Daniel.

Post Script… Some brain bleach.

Shared Quote… “The fact that an opinion has been widely held is no evidence whatever that it is not utterly absurd.” — Bertrand Russell

Hosted by The Simple Woman.

The Simple Woman’s Daybook: September 25, 2018

For Today… September 25, 2018

Simple Woman's Daybook

Looking out my window… sunny.

I am thinking… about the changes I’m having to make to my degree plan based on the appointment with the Autism Center for Daniel yesterday.

I am thankful… to not be doing my Final Project for my degree(s) this quarter.

One of my favorite things… Sleepy black kitties. 🙂

I am wearing…a tie-dyed shirt and black capris.

I am creating… child support case paperwork.

I am listening to… Daniel playing on his tablet.

I am hoping… to get the child support order mess fixed quickly.

I am learning… about how to file all the necessary papers in Washington.

In my kitchen… heated up some chicken shu mai from Trader Joe’s.

In the school room… Daniel loves school.

Post Script… this is a useful reddit thread.

Shared Quote… “Lighthouses don’t go running all over an island looking for boats to save; They just stand there shining.” Anne Lamott

Hosted by The Simple Woman.

7 Quick Takes: Insert A Witty Title Here Edition

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

Nostalgia. How many of you had a Caboodles cosmetic case when you were little? Apparently, they’re selling vintage ones now. I’d get one, but I never wear make-up!

— 2 —

NaNo update. I’m in the world-building part of NaNoWriMo prep. It’s harder this year because I don’t have anyone I want to kill… too badly. (There are always some people who have died multiple times or who have been used as examples multiple times.) I’m having to use various name generators to come up with people and to give them characteristics of people I know.

And as always, I’m willing to kill you off creatively for a charity donation. This year’s charity: Heifer International. Leave a comment or email me if you’re interested.

— 3 —

Something new. I got an email from my new boss in the tutoring program at school and it included her pronouns in her email signature. This is the first time I have seen that and I thought it was interesting. (I’m a cis female so not having to think about that is privilege on my part, I guess.)

— 4 —

Duuuuuude… I kind of want this.

— 5 —

Because RBG. I need a dissent collar like nobody’s business.

— 6 —

Good news. Per Kelly, FULTON IS HOME! Details here.

— 7 —

One more NaNo thing. If you have a kid who loves to write, consider checking out the Young Writers Project. I would have loved to have something like it as a kid, and I joyfully contribute to fund it every time I do NaNo. (This is my 8th time.)

For more Quick Takes, visit Kelly at This Ain’t The Lyceum.