Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween!

Who needs substance when you have three little pigs and a big bad wolf?
It's proof that I thought the whole costume idea was awesome that I'm putting this picture of myself on the internet ;-).
The first two were from a halloween costume we all went to.  This second one is from the day care Halloween party.  I'm partying despite mastitis as they are that much fun!
Cannibal pig!
That's it for today.  But I am going to write a followup to the transportation posts I wrote before the girls were born soon, because the solutions are grand!
And a couple random pictures:


Tuesday, October 9, 2012

We are still alive!

I've been busy and mainly using phone as computer outside of the office, so I really haven't updated.  A couple of you who are commenters/readers have found me on Facebook or emailed me (see right bar) and had me find you on Facebook and that is actually probably the best bet for right now since I don't know when I'll get back to updating in a timely fashion...

I'm sure there are lots of cute pictures and interesting anecdotes in the last three months, but it seems likey I'll never really update them.

Brief updates:

Trajan started kindergarten at the end of August at our local neighorhood school.  He has a great teacher that it turned out we already know as her son was in Chiron's infant class.  He's had some behavioral issues and adjustments, but is doing really well academically.  He has been the most amazing brother that I can conceive of.  The devotion and love he shows his siblings is absolutely amazing.  It is definitely worth getting myself to take the time to come here and write a real post to document some of it so that I never forget how he has been with all of them. 

Poppins quit, by text, when the girls were a couple weeks old for reasons relating to her being pregnant, Medicare, WIC and other factors that aren't worth my time to bring up.  We were trying to find a quick nanny from an agency, but my mother volunteered to stay with the girls for August and September rather than have us leave newborns with someone that we wouldn't have the time to really vet.  That was great and really awesome for them.   Chiron started back at the daycare he was at before on August 1 and the girls joined him at the start of October.  Seems to be going pretty well.

Chiron is really blossoming into himself and starting to communicate with more words in the last few months.  His brother is still his favorite person in the world and it is really cool watching Chiron imitate Trajan (well, at least in most things).  Yesterday, I was running late and so I had Paul go pick up Trajan and I just went and got the littles.  Normally I pick up Trajan first and he helps me pick them up including rocking and kissing each sister as we put our shoes back on in the front room.  Chiron did this yesterday, I guess becuase Trajan wasn't there! 

The girls are doing well.  At the beginning of September, we got Ari in for a swallow study after the gastroenterologist agreed with me that something wasn't right about how she swallows and we found that she was aspirating with each swallow.  So she is on thickened expressed milk and should be in speech therapy, but getting all the ducks in a row with the hospital has been insane.  The GI nurse says that I should hear with her first appointment by Thursday at the latest, but since we have been working at this for a month, I'll believe it when I hear it.  Allie is following in the boys fine footsteps with extremely severe reflux, but so far no indicators of either milk soy protein intolerance or congenital lactase deficiency.

I was talking to a friend earlier today and realized how much has happened in such a short period of time.  Two years ago today, I was almost 20 weeks pregnant with Chiron and Aurelia with no idea of any problems on the horizon.  Since then, either Chiron or I has been in the hospital for six months and three children have been added to our family.

I still think of Aurelia often.  She is real to me even though she isn't to the rest of the world.  I held her in my arms, she was formed and perfect and complete.  She may have never breathed a breath, but she still was to me.  I don't know if it should matter when she died, but it does for some reason in my head.  She was very potentially viable had she been born instead of died on November 11, 2011.

That said, I think I've come much more to terms with her life and death.  I can mention her without sounding as awkward and don't avoid her when her inclusion makes an answer stronger or better.  I have had some odd thoughts relating to her and the girls.  They look so much alike that it leaves my wondering more of how she would have looked.  You may have noticed that all of their names start with an A.  Aletheia was actually the second name we had identified before we knew Chiron and Aurelia's genders and after a lot of discussion and research, I came back to it this time.  At that point Paul suggested that we make both of their names start with an A.  So all three girls are A's, and I like this.  I still mourn not getting to use and hear Aurelia's name though independently of mourning her, as odd as that may sound.

I've come to the conclusion that you should never make a comment on someone's gravid status, their children's spacing or their genders.  Because I can not count the number of times someone has volunteered that our family is perfect since we have two boys and two girls.

Paul is doing well.  He's always been good, but having the two littles has really resulted in him stepping up to amazing.  He gets the girls down each night while I put the boys down and actually takes and drops off all three littles at daycare on his own.  And he keeps us all fed in addition to all the normal household tasks of laundry, dishes and cleaning.  I've been overwhelmed a couple times by the situation in which I find myself that is my life, but he's plugged through like a pro this whole time.  I'm lucky and blessed and should probably remember to tell him that more often.  And to find the time to just sit and listen and talk instead of feeling like I always need to be running and doing.

Thank you all for caring about me and my whole family.  Here's a couple random shots:

Very random assortment, but I figure I'm unlikely to ever go fill in unless I get smart and use my Facebook to provide structure, so here's for now!

Oh, and I figure since so much of my life is filled with breastmilk that I should add something here.  Ari went up to the NICU for apnea which was probably related to her swallowing disorder, so she had a slower start to breast feeding, but I had both of them feeding pretty well as long as I tandemed at the time Ari was moved to the thickened milk.  Now all of her milk has to be expressed so it can be thickened.  And these girls drink a ton.  I was having to thaw some for a bit a couple weeks ago, but I think I'm back to keeping up with them.  Since Allie direct feeds in the evenings and nights, it's hard to know exactly how much they are going through, but it is dang close to two liters a day if it's not over. Part of my stress came because I gave away the vast majority of our freezer stash early on because until Ari stopped direct feeding I was staying well ahead of them.  But things are looking alright now.