February 28, 2013

The Lady at the Cafeteria

I don't think I've ever told this story to anyone.

While Rachel was in the NICU at Brenner Children's Hospital, Stephen and I would go down to their cafeteria to eat quite often. There was a woman who most every day went around and cleaned the tables. She would remove trash, spray down the table and wipe them off. She had Down syndrome.

I felt like that was a cruel thing for life to do to me. As if it was shoving the obvious in my face saying, "this is what will become of your daughter." What made it worse was this woman looked unhappy. She did her job with no joy or even pride, it seemed. I did not like her immediately and I hated each time I had to see her but at the same time I would glace sideways at her looking for clues to how my daughter would be. I could not even smile at her.

I don't know why this has stuck with me, this woman who worked at that cafeteria. Sometimes I sit and try to think of why she was there at the same time Rachel was. Why I was shown this person who seemed so unhappy. What would have happened if I had smiled at her or talked to her? Loving Rachel for three and a half years has opened my heart more than I thought possible. I wish I could go back to that cafeteria and find that woman and say hello and engage her in conversation. I hope she has found a job that makes her happy.

February 22, 2013

Growing Up

In the midst of all this sickness, there is a silver lining. I've learned that my big girl really is maturing. Doctor appointments and her have not mixed for some time. I dreaded each and every time we had to go to some waiting room or some office and have some kind of something done. It always involved me holding her in a wrestling move while the doctor tried to get done what they needed to do.

We had to go to the ER a couple weeks ago. Again, I was dreading it. I just KNEW what was going to happen. Only it didn't. Rachel sat with us and watched movies while we waited. She calmly let the doctor listen to her heart and then later administer a breathing treatment. She sat with me on the bed in the not private exam room without a door and had snacks. Never once did she try and run away or arch her back and scream. This was a 4 hour visit during the worst time of the day, dinner time. I was blown away.

The last few visits at the pediatrician went just as well. The doctor looked in her ears and Rachel just sat still and let her. I don't think that has ever happened before. They needed to get an oxygen reading and used a device that monitors it using her hand. She let the nurse do it. She also patiently waited in the exam room reading books and using a bead maze.

Today we went to the hospital for some chest x-rays (She does not have pneumonia!). We had to register and she sat in the chair next to mine and drew on some paper with a pen while I gave the tech our information. In the imaging waiting room she read magazines. For the x-ray she stool nicely on a stool and afterwards even took her little "apron" back to the place the tech got it from. Not one fit. Not one argument from her. Just absolutely calm and wonderful. I never thought we would ever get to this spot in time so soon at three and a half years old. I am so proud of how my girl is growing up and just amazed that she is doing all this while constantly being so sick. I love you my Rachel girl!

February 21, 2013

Let's Tally It Up

Sicknesses since November:

Croup -2
Flu - 3
Stomach Flu - 2
RSV- 1
Ear Infections - 6
Bronchitis - 1
Bronchiolitis - 1

All of that in just 3 months. If you have a house in a nice tropical place and would like to invite us to use it, please leave a comment. 

February 18, 2013

February 8, 2013

You know everyone is feeling better when they start trashing the house.

Rachel is signing "cookie", because I guess she needs a reward for the mess

February 7, 2013

Outside, Outside

We went out a couple times to enjoy the nice weather this week. The kids have fun out in the yard. Rachel is the first to want to go inside. I think Charlie could stay out there all day.

playing with the scraps of leaves!

running down the "hill" - very small incline

he loves his shovels