August 2013

August 2013
Photo by KME Photography

Monday, May 30, 2011

Doing better...

Overall Brecken is doing much better with his allergies! He is breathing totally normal again without any nebulizer treatments and he can open his eyes all the way now since they're not swollen anymore. We had to do the nebulizer right at the 4 hour mark all day last Saturday because he would start wheezing about 3-3 1/2 hours after the previous treatment. Then Sunday we gave him just one treatment right before bed, and we haven't had to touch it since :) However, he still has had a cough, bad congestion, a milder rash, and his eyes were still pretty red this week soooo... I made another phone call to the dr mid-week and then ended up taking him in again this past Friday. WE HAVE STUMPED THE DOCTOR... She's pretty certain that this is all seasonal allergies since he itches all the time, but she has never had to treat the red, puffy eye condition in any children as young as Brecken before! She was literally researching on her computer while we were in the office, but all of the eye drops she normally prescribes are only for children 3 years of age and older (and Brecken isn't even quite 2). She said she'd have to call the pediatric opthamalogist and get back to me about treating his eyes. She was actually able to reach that dr right way and then called me to give me the update. The opthamalogist had some drops to recommend that they use quite frequently for the little ones, and they're totally safe (I'm glad our pediatrician consulted with the expert!) We've now been using those drops since Friday night, and we've seen a huge improvement already! We may eventually need to change the allergy med too since he is still pretty congested, but the pediatrician didn't want to make 2 changes at once, which makes total sense. The other issue we discussed at the appointment was his ear infection...his infection was gone BUT there was still cloudy-fluid in his right ear and we were on the very last day of his antibiotics :( We're leaving it as is for now because she said his ear is not going to completely clear up until we get rid of the nasal congestion. So...hopefully this cloudy-fluid doesn't turn into another infection anytime soon!

I hope you've all had an enjoyable Memorial Weekend! We spent most of the weekend at my parents' cabin. It was relaxing even though the weather wasn't the greatest. Brecken enjoyed playing in the sand and went fishing with Grandpa Dave for the very first time!

We came home last night so that today we could get a few things done and enjoy some family time.

Brecken and the neighbor

Planting Mommy's Mother's Day lilac
Thank you to all of the men and women who have served our country! Your service is greatly appreciated!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Friday Night @ CHILDREN'S E.R. !

Let me preface this post by saying that everything is good now...we were sent home with nebulizer treatments and a prescription ointment for his rash.

Here's how our Friday went...I called Brecken's pediatrician on my way to work in the morning to say that his symptoms have gotten slightly worse despite the Benadryl/Zyrtec. His right eye would only open about half-way because it was so swollen and red. She said she could see him at 11:15. Then D.J. and I talked it over, and with a slight disagreement we decided to see if she was ok if we would wait it out through the weekend and give the Zyrtec a longer chance to start working, as D.J. and I both have learned through our own experiences that allergy meds take a few days to build up in your system. With a little phone tag, she said she was comfortable waiting until Monday and confirmed that Zyrtec takes 4-5 days to fully take effect. WELL...Friday evening when we got home from work, Brecken seemed to be going steadily down-hill. His rash and puffy eyes were getting slightly worse and we started to hear a wheeze in his breathing. Needless to say, we canceled our plans for serving at Feed My Starving Children so we could keep a close eye on him. As his wheezing continued even after his recent dose of Zyrtec, we made the decision to take him in. We were nervous that if this was all allergy related, how would be able to tell if his throat was starting to swell? Is it possible that it could suddenly become too late and we'd be frantically calling 911? We didn't want to overreact, but at the same time, an allergic reaction can very quickly cause extremely difficult breathing. We quickly got a few things together, and jumped in the car to head down to Children's Minneapolis ER. We LOVE Children's (and learned the hard way after Brecken was born very premature and was eventually transferred to a closer hospital, that NOTHING compares to the excellent care provided at Children's!) Plus, our pediatrician has told us on more than one occasion that if it's after hours, don't mess around with Urgent Care, just go to the ER. In our minds, there was really no other consideration of where to take him at 6:15p.m. on a Friday night.

On the ride down, he continued to wheeze, and at one-point I was wondering if we would make it all the way down there or if we would need to call 911 and have an ambulance meet us! His wheezing got a little worse and I put my hand on his chest and could feel extreme inflation/deflation. I could tell he was really working hard to breathe. That lightened up some and I took a BIG sigh of relief when he started blurting out words again and was no longer looking at me with a sad face that said...mommy, what is going on?

Once down at Children's, we got in pretty quickly which was nice. When they closely listened to his breathing, they could hear a wheeze on the inhale and exhale BOTH, which usually means it has progressed from how it starts with just the one-way. Because of the wheezing, they gave him a nebulizer treatment and ordered a chest x-ray to make sure there wasn't anything they were missing like pneumonia. The nebulizer treatment really helped and after that you could no longer see the outline of his ribs when he was breathing - thank God! The chest x-rays came back looking good, so they sent us home with Albuterol nebulizer treatments and a prescription strength ointment for the rash. The medical resident student thought all of this was seasonal allergies. The supervising ER doc told us he thought the symptoms looked more to be from a viral infection than seasonal allergies. Who knows? All I know is that I'm happy it wasn't anything too serious and that he is breathing much better now!

Brecken was such a trooper down at Children's...we must have worked with 7-8 different people (2 nurses, resident student, actual dr, respiratory therapist, radiologist,etc.) throughout our short-stay and Brecken was GREAT with all of them despite it ending up being about 2 hours past his bedtime! The only time he gave us a hard time was when the resident dr. used the tongue depressor to look at his throat and then when they first started the nebulizer. When we went over to radiology for the chest x-rays, they had all of kinds of twinkling lights on the ceiling to keep his attention. I was like....awwwww, I'm SO glad we came to CHILDREN'S! All of the staff was soooo kid-friendly, even the patient registration gal that came into the room. Brecken normally shuts down around new people but he was actually showing all of his animal noises for them, even at 9 p.m.!

We got out of there around 10:00 and headed back home to Elk River. The night actually went really well all things considered, and he didn't need another nebulizer treatment until close to 6 a.m. when he started laboring with his breathing again. Now it's 7:45, Brecken is back to sleep - he is NEVER sleeping this late in the morning and D.J. went downstairs to go back to bed, since he got less sleep than I did. I'm wide awake now, so I thought I'd update everyone on the situation. I'm sure I'll catch a nap later, as Brecken will likely (hopefully :) take a long nap to catch-up! The other good news is that we don't have any plans for the weekend (that is a first time in a long time, and it feels GREAT!)

Oh... and are we regretting that we didn't take him into the pediatrician earlier in the day? Well I'm the one that wanted to take him back in...and I will even admit that I don't think it probably would've changed our scenario much. His breathing was perfectly fine until after 5p.m. so it's probable that she would've just said to wait longer for the Zyrtec to work. Who knows? It is what it is, and now we know everything was checked out and we have nebulizer treatments to give if necessary and he seems to respond very well to those!

Well I'm going to go find me some breakfast and probably coffee too ;)
Here's a couple pictures of Brecken in his hospital gown :(

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Another ear infection :(

Brecken has been showing lots of signs that he may have allergies (surprise, surprise, since both of his parents have terrible allergies), so we've been thinking about taking him into the doctor to see what she thought. Well Wednesday morning, he woke up with a red rash all over his face, neck, and upper back. I checked online, and she had an 8:00 appointment available for that day so we decided to take him in "just to find out if he had allergies and what was up with his rash." Well...he had ANOTHER ear infection with pretty much no symptoms! The kid has been sleeping fine, eating like a little piglet, acting perfectly happy, and once again did not run a temp. Now, don't get me wrong... I LOVE that he is an easy-going kid and still so happy when he is sick. However, it would be nice to have a little indication that he has an infection! (Otherwise we feel like we practically have to take him in for every little sniffle since every time he is congested, he has an ear infection) Plus, the doctor looked at his tonsils and said he could likely have strep throat too. I was like...oh, great...I didn't request a sub for today because I thought I was just taking him in for a quick check of his allergies. (My students have Phy Ed/Music first thing in the morning, so I just took a little sick time and said "no sub needed") When I heard that he might have strep, I paniced because it was too late in the morning to request a full day sub w/o our secretary making tons of phone calls, and DJ's work day was filled with appointments so he wasn't going to be able to come home either. Not to mention that I didn't have any sub plans ready...let's face it, this time of year I barely know what I am doing, let alone telling a sub what to do! Plus, if Brecken had strep, I shouldn't be bringing him into a school full of kids so that I could get my sub plans ready. Well, fortunately, the strep test came back negative, so I was saved! I really didn't want to miss Wednesday because I knew today I was going to be gone at a District Math Curriculum Review meeting all day, and it was tough enough to get those sub plans ready.
The dr. put him on a stronger anti-biotic this time since he was just treated for an ear infection about three weeks ago. We DO know that the infection was gone in between because we took him back in when he was still showing some symptoms after a few days on that round of meds. She isn't really worried about the multiple ear infections because she thinks this one is probably due to the congestion from the allergies. She recommendied trying Benadryl, and if that seemed to help, we should get some OTC Zyrtec to help with his allergies. Well...we have tried both, but his rash, congestion, and puffy eyes, have all gotten WORSE so there very well may be another dr. visit/phone call coming up soon!
Well enough rambling, have a great weekend!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Happy Mother's Day!

We had a fun-filled day! Yesterday, Grandma & Grandpa Hoelscher came down and spent the night at our house. Today we went to church, had brunch (Auntie Tracy and Nick came too :) and now we're getting ready to head to my brother's to celebrate with my side of the family. I have the best husband in the world - he baked an egg dish and muffins for our brunch today, and now he's making cheesy-ranch potatoes to bring to our dinner tonight - Wow!

Happy Mother's Day, everyone!

Here's a cute video of Brecken "singing"

Monday, May 2, 2011

Ear Infection #2 and a busy weekend!

Yes, Brecken had another right ear infection over Easter weekend. He did pretty well through Easter - just a runny nose, cough, and more mellow than usual. BUT after spending Sunday night cuddling in the recliner all night, I decided to take him to the doctor on that next Monday. It turned out he had his 2nd ear infection. It's amazing how content he is even with an ear infection. We never know when we should take him to the doctor, or if it's just a cold. However, Brecken normally sleeps like a champ and Sunday night he would cough like crazy and then cry every couple of minutes! I finally said enough of this, and tried keeping him upright in the recliner with me. It worked great and he slept really well. Me, on the other hand, not so much, but thankfully I had Easter Monday off of work :)

This weekend was insanely busy! Friday night, I volunteered at our school carnival. Saturday we spent most of the day preparing to speak at our Sunday night church service ("The Gathering"). Our friend, Bjorn, (we met him and Esther when I was in the hospital on bed rest, as they had just gone through a similar experience with their twin girls) is the pastor at that service. Well right now they are all in Germany for a month visiting Esther's family, so he asked for people to speak on the Sundays while they are away. Lucky us, we got to be first and have the most challenging topic (according to Bjorn anyway) I was a nervous-wreck and Saturday we took turns watching Brecken and preparing for our speech.

Sunday, we had our March for Babies walk. It was lots of fun, and we always enjoy walking in honor of our miracle boy, Brecken! It was FREEZING cold, so we had to cut the route a bit short but it was still a great event. They had an incredible turn-out despite the extremely cold weather and nasty wind. Then after the walk, I was off to bridesmaid dress shopping for a wedding I'm in in November. After that, I quick picked up a couple groceries, shoveled in our dinner, and then we were off to church to speak! Uff da! The presentation went well, and I'm definitely relieved that it's done now :) It's a small service, so that definitely helped ease my nerves!

That's all the updates for now...I'm hoping for warmer temperatures in the coming days!