Monday, August 30, 2010

An Unexpected Shift...

There have been some significant changes since I last posted...

Life at Simpson University has been getting very busy and hectic as I have been madly preparing for the return of our student leaders and a week and 1/2 of intense training. This is always a very busy time of year but this was the first time that I was in charge of putting together all of the training for our Student Life student leaders so the pressure was higher than normal.

Last Saturday (August 21) I spent the day taking it easy and winding down from a busy week. In the evening Priya and I went out to do some grocery shopping and I began to have some rather painful contractions (I was almost 27 weeks at the time). After several hours of being unable to stop them I called the doctor on call and was advised to go into the hospital. Ashish was working while all of this was going on but his boss was very supportive and let him go so that he could take me. Fortunately we were able to bypass the ER and went straight up to Labor and Delivery. It took 5 hours total (not 5 hrs in the hospital) to get the contractions to stop (much longer than any episode I ever had with Priya). And they eventually released me, assuring me that the baby was healthy and that I would be fine.

I slept a lot of the day on Sunday and then went back to work on Monday but found myself having painful contractions yet again after walking across the parking lot and over to my office. They seemed to hit almost every time I stood up or moved about at all. I called my doctor and he put me on bed rest for 2 days and told me to come in on Tuesday morning. After meeting with him, his recommendation was that I go on disability for the duration of my pregnancy (I have 3 months to go). This came as quite a shock. I thought this would pass and that I'd simply be instructed to reduce some of the stress and peripheral activities in my life, get extra rest, keep my feet up more, drink even more water, etc. I was wrong about that!

This has been a hard decision for me on so many levels, but in looking at the bigger picture I know that it’s what I need to do for the health of the baby and for my health as well. It was hard to walk away from a job that I really do love and to leave my team (the day that round one of our student leaders were scheduled to arrive). But the positive side of things is that I now have the opportunity to do what my heart has been yearning for – to be home with my daughter and to have the opportunity to be a mom and wife without having my emotional and physical energy depleted by the demands and stresses of work. I love my job (most of it anyways) and find a great deal of fulfillment in what I do, but it really can take away my family and my ability to be as invested in them as I'd like to be. So I am focusing on the positive and thanking God for this *blessing* while I have it.

The past week has been difficult but good. My stress levels have definitely decreased and I've been feeling more "normal" as each day passes. I am able to move about here and there but have to be careful not to be on my feet too much or those crazy contractions come back. Fortunately by putting my feet up I've been able to stop them every time. I'm thankful that I'm not on strict bed rest and that I do have some freedom, but I definitely have to be careful.

My parents are back in Redding (they arrived the day my doctor put me on disability), so the timing couldn't be better. It's been great to have this time with them and to have some additional hands to help Priya get the exercise that I'm not able to adequately give her right now. She, of course, is thrilled that they are back as well!

Ashish has been really helpful and supportive through these transitions. He is back in school, taking some pre-requisites to an RN program. He's trying to get some of the hardest classes out of the way before the baby arrives, so he is definitely keeping busy with his studies and with his job as well.

So there you have it. Life is definitely never dull around the Christian household! There always seems to be something going on... :) We are thankful for God's provisions, that our baby boy is healthy and strong and for the support of family and friends.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

She's on the mend!

Priya has shown a great deal of improvement today!! She woke up saying she was hungry and actually ate more than 2 bites! She also didn't want/need to sleep most of the day, actually had energy to move around our apartment and asked to go outside! So I took her out for a while for a change of scenery. She's lost weight this week from not being able to keep anything down and basically not eating! She was already so tiny to begin with but now she feels so frail to me when I hold her. But now that she's eating again and regaining her strength I'm sure she'll be back to normal soon!

Drewey (her monkey friend) came along for the outing. This isn't a common occurance but we made an exception since she's been sick.

I was SO happy to see this mischevious smile back on her face again today!

In case you're wondering, the stuff on her right arm is adhesive residue from her IV from Tuesday! We're having a hard time getting that stuff to come off!

Thanks again for your prayers! It's so great to have our little monkey back again! :) She's even sleeping in her own bed tonight!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Priya Update

Today is the 4th day that Priya has been sick. She has shown many improvements - no more throwing up and no more fever. But she continues to be quite ill. She has struggled with sleeping due to stomach pain and has been crying and fussing quite a bit over the past two days. It's heart breaking to see your child in pain! She has eaten very little these past four days (a cracker here, a spoonful of rice there, maybe a bite or two of a banana) and has such little energy, says very little and just wants to snuggle close to us when awake or asleep. She usually sleeps in her own bed but has been sleeping with us since this whole thing began. I have to say that both Ashish and I are enjoying this time of closeness with her but wish it were under different circumstances.

After missing three days of work I went back this morning, but am back home again this afternoon because she's still so sick. But she is very closely following the pattern that her doctor predicted so we are confident that she'll be back to her normal self again soon. We're praying for peace for her little body and for a speedy recovery. Thanks for your prayers and encouragement.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Priya's Trip to the ER

Priya gave us a bit of a scare yesterday. She woke up around 4am and cried for me to come to her room. I thought it was your typical, "Mommy, I have to go potty" scenario. But when I got to her room she was crying more than normal. She then said, "Mommy, I spilled". I thought maybe she'd wet the bed or something (surprisingly she hasn't done this once since she's been potty trained). But I soon discovered that she'd thrown up in her bed. And the throwing up continued every 5-10 minutes for hours!

We called Priya's doctor as soon as his office was open and were told to watch closely, try to get liquids in her to keep her from getting dehydrated and to call back/go to the ER if she continued to throw up after 12 hours. It was a long day (with a lot of laundry) and Priya was unable to keep anything down. We watched her go from crying a little bit as she got sick, then bouncing back to her typical self in between episodes, to becoming increasingly lethargic and weak. We eventually called the doctor back and were encouraged to take her to the ER so off we went.

Fortunately the wait wasn't too long to get in to see a doctor - only about 30-45 minutes. Priya just snuggled in our laps while we waited. Then she was finally given a bed (and her monkey blanket Drewey came along too). I've wondered many times what she would be like in a hospital if she ever got sick. I imagined her crying and wanting to run around and not stay put. But she was very different from that. She just laid there, quietly studying her surroundings, sucking her thumb and sleeping on and off.
She was eventually given an IV so that she could be rehydrated and was given medication to stop the vomiting. They had to tape up her arm and put a brace on it to keep her from bending it. This process was quite scary for her. But once it was complete she was calm again. They proceeded to run a series of test including x-rays as well as blood and urine tests (the most painful for her).
After all the tests were done and 2 bags of IV fluids had been administered there were still concerned that she hadn't perked up or changed at all during her time there. They told us they were going to admit her and move her up to Pediatrics so that they could run more tests and continue to observe her. They were concerned about elevated white blood cell count and the possibility of appendicitis.
They did an ultrasound and after about an hour came back and told us that they'd changed their mind about admitting her. They had ruled out appendicitis and thought that she'd be more comfortable at home. They were still concerned but instructed us to return the next day for a follow-up appointment and possible further tests.

After 8 hours in the ER we were released and got home around 1am. Priya slept with us during the night and has remained either on our laps our in our arms for almost the entire day today. This morning we to take her to her pediatrician for her follow-up appt rather than take her back to the ER. She experienced a lot of poking and prodding yesterday at the ER which was tough on her and very scary. Her pediatrician was involved in her case via phone and we trust him a great deal with her care. We knew that she’d feel safer with him and that the appointment would be much shorter (ie. 30 min vs. 4 or so hours).

Priya has only thrown up 1x today which is a HUGE improvement from the 40-50 times that it happened yesterday. So that is a very good thing. She is very achy today, very weak, tired and has a fever. She wants to be held while awake and sleeping so we are taking turns snuggling with her and trying to comfort her. Her doctor thinks it’s probably just a really bad case of the flu/gastroenteritis and that the elevated white blood cell count was a result of the trauma/stress of throwing up so much yesterday. She is on a liquid diet and is expected to be back to her normal, cheerful, energetic self in about a week.

It's heart-wrenching to see your child in pain and so fragile. She is normally so full of life and enthusiasm. But we are thankful that her situaiton isn't more serious. She gave us a scare but God has been watching over her and we are so thankful for His protection.