Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Happy Birthday Moonpie!

Some photos from Susan's birthday party in Chattanooga. Beth, Susannah, Auntie A-Lo made the trip from NYC. Rob and Denise graciously hosted.

Susannah pushing her cart around asking for handouts.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Susannah is on the move

We had a lovely weekend here in Brooklyn, and Susannah was outside for at least four hours each day. She has been tearing up the playground on Underhill Ave. on a push toy that happens to have been donated to the playground by none other than Saida Thomas. S has proven capable of turning, backing it up, and basically going wherever she wants to go. Going wherever she wants to go is what she is really into by the way.

All she wants to do is walk, and she is not afraid to wear her parents out by doing so.

I (Ben) had to throw this one in. I call it "deep space baby."

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Goodbye Summer

We have to be at the hospital in about six hours, and since I am awake I might as well blog. We expect the procedure tomorrow to be short and smooth. S will undergo anesthesia and they will be taking out the aforementioned stents. Not sure how long the "wait-and-see" approach will last but I hope it is for a while. She's really been thriving this summer, despite all the crap she's endured. Did I tell you all that she weighed 18 pounds, 10 ounces at the pediatrician's appointment, like, two weeks ago? That's more than a pound in about a month! Porky might be her new nickname, one that we would gladly bestow upon her.

In other news, I went back to school. I am taking one class, a nonfiction workshop, on Wednesday afternoons. I started last week. I'm really happy about it and feel like I won some kind of prize. (that is easy to say now, since I already finished my homework for the next class. Wait until I have my first big piece due and I'll be bitching all about it, trust me, you'll hear it.)

Anyway, end of summer photos. This is how we spent Labor Day weekend.

After an awesome brunch in our old hood with Pat and Peter, Ben and S and I hit Central Park. Reading material and a popsicle in the park is one of the city's great rituals, and Susannah is becoming a pro.

The night before we were in Prospect Park for a picnic with the Thomases. We don't even try to get all the kids to sit still for a photo -- this is the best we can do.

Ah yes, the West Indian Day Parade. One of the largest parades in the world, and it happens every Labor Day, one block from our apartment. We got back from the Upper West Side in time for Ben to get a few end-of-the-line photos. Sexy, no?

The front is arguably even better.

Backing Up: Goodbye August

Susannah spent a good chunk of August in Chattanooga. One trip was for some R&R with mom and the second was for Ibbe's funeral. Ibbe was her great-grandmother and my last remaining grandparent. She was a great lady and treated me like a queen every day of my life. Susannah is well on her way to knowing what it is like to have grandparents like that.

Here's a few snaps from the month.

Chillin with Granddaddy.

Surrounded by trees at this nature preserve we went to in upstate NY. (I have no idea how this underline thing got turned on and now I don't know how to turn it off. Sorry.)

Discovering at the TN Aquarium that she wants an aquarium of her own!

Stingrays with Grandpa Jim and Grandma Jill are cool.

Coffee talk with Grandpa Jim.

Smelling the mint in Jill's garden with Aunt A-Lo.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

NO Fungus Among Us!!

Yeehaw. The stents will probably come out a week from Monday and no further interventions are planned for now. Every one hope for the best! Enjoy the weekend! Thanks for the love.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

A Medical Rant. Beware.

Susannah is doing better than ever, yet every time I take her to the urologist we get crappy news. News that makes me want to pull my hair out or strangle someone or both. Today's sonogram--which we spent two hours waiting for--shows that her kidneys are pretty much as swollen as they were before the stents were put in over two weeks ago.

So we continue to play the why-aren't-her kidneys-draining game, which we have been playing for, let's see, 15 months now? Today the doctor tells me he thinks he saw some debris in the ureters, which could mean a fungal infection, which sometimes happens when you have foreign objects (aka stents) in your body. If it is indeed a fungal infection, she'll need oral antibiotics, but sometimes oral antibiotics don't work, in which case they resort to IV antibiotics. Which means that Susannah could be hospitalized for a few days or even up to a week for a round of IV antibiotics for an infection she contracted due to a completely WORTHLESS procedure.

And this is the point where I'd like to begin screaming. Only I don't want to wake the baby or have my neighbors call 911.

Instead I get to wait until Thursday. That's when the urine culture results are supposed to be ready. If she is growing something, it will take even a few more days to know how to treat it.

In the meantime, I am trying to figure out if I am going to go back to Sarah Lawrence for one class this semester. I'm signed up for a Wednesday workshop and I'm supposed to be looking for a regular babysitter. After all, Susannah looks better than ever. Her appetite, her energy level, her physical development are all very good as everyone who has seen her lately knows. After today, I am doubting if going to school is a good idea. What if a week from now, Susannah has to have these IV antibiotics and is back in the hospital? What if the next three months are like the past three months with all the procedures and appointments? What if she just has stretched kidney system and I spend the next 10 years of my life taking her to doctors to be monitored, getting stressed about scenarios that could occur but never do?

I'm. Going. Crazy.

But first, Things to Be Positive About:

1. Aunt Anne Louise came to the hospital for today's marathon, which began when we left the apt. at 9 am and ended when we got home at 5 pm. She kept me and S in good spirits as S was poked with a needle (for bloodwork), drained with a catheter (for urine culture), and smeared with gel (for ultrasound). Thank you Aunt A-Lo; we needed you.

2. The nephrologist (kidney function doctor) thought Susannah looked "fabulous." Her sodium and potassium and creatinine levels have all been stable throughout the spring and summer. She's showing no signs of kidney damage.

3. Susannah is not and has not behaved like a sick child for many weeks now. Lately, when you ask her what noise a pig makes, she can get very pensive and then make this gentle gutteral sound with her throat. She's got a pretty good downward dog, too.

Now, some post-vent photos from the tot-lot:

The Pop-eye face

Peek-a-boo with dad