Friday, December 11, 2009

Life and Stuff

What has been going on? Where have you been? Are you guys alive in there? Those are the questions and here are the answers... work and a sick child has been what's going on... I have been in my studio working and yes, thank God, we are all alive. It's that time of year for me when I am super busy with work. It's been a family event lately with Steve and Emma helping out a good deal. The economy and not really knowing what work would look like prevented me from hiring on additional people. I do have my Julie on call but she has a new opportunity that is turning out great so I am trying not to rely on her so much and give her time to do her thing... so that is where Emma and Steve come in. So appreciate their help and Emma rocks. She is really helpful...don't think I haven't thought of pulling her out of school to work full time. hee- just kidding... So as with most small businesses, we didn't hire on and had to beef up our own productivity and that means working a whole lot more. It's been very busy and I am grateful for that. So that covers work... next... sick child.

My sweet Ellie has had a lot going on the last 6 weeks. She received the H1N1 vaccine and then came down with whatever was going around. Was it the flu? Maybe, never had a professional diagnosis but it really wasn't that bad for her. The bad part was the hives she had for about 5 days after being sick. A combination of the vaccine, being sick and taking the over the counter meds all in a week's timeframe was the cause. She was placed on steroids to stop the hives. She was fine for about 3 weeks. Tuesday night her stomach started to hurt. I thought it may be gas pain. Steve was out of town so I got her all set up in my room to keep her close. That night the pain came. She had such abdominal pain. I could see her stomach was distended and hot to the touch. The pain was there but not constant. Her pediatrician thought she may be constipated. It had been a full day since she had gone to the bathroom so that made sense. By midnight it wasn't improving and I called her pediatrician back. Ellie was able to jump up and down without too much pain so she ruled out her appendix. (professional test I know). The pain was there and I know Ellie has a high tolerance so I was really concerned. We actually headed to the ER around 3am but Ellie said sitting up made her feel a lot better so we turned around and got some gas x and were able to get some sleep for a few hours. The pain was there on Wednesday but the milk of magnesia and laxative they advised us to use did it's job and she had two bowel movements, unfortunately the pain was still present. That night a friend of ours who is a surgeon dealing with gastro stuff came over and performed an examine. He saw she was swollen and didn't think it was constipation. He also didn't think it was her appendix. He said it's so hard to tell with kids as they present differently and sometimes it can be something serious. He said to take her to get scans in the morning if she was still uncomfortable. Her pain was much improved but still there so her pediatrician sent us off for CT, Xray and ultrasound. She examined her that morning and was concerned about her liver. That was the sensitive spot on Ellie's body. Can I tell you that Steve and I were so scared. When your child has had cancer before and there is something wrong, all of those emotions and fear come storming back in. I kept thinking about 'secondary cancer'. All of the treatment Ellie endured to kill her cancer can cause new cancer some where in her body. It's rare but it can happen. Steve and I had our weak moment and then tried to focus on being positive and awaiting the test results and giving our worries over to God. The Xray looks fine and this morning we received word that the CT and Ultrasound were normal... Thank God. We are off to do some lab work this afternoon to make sure her levels are all normal. Ellie feels better this morning and is eating again. I have peace that she is fine. I didn't have it yesterday but it has flooded me today. Ellie is playing and not complaining this morning. Steve came home a day early so he was here all day yesterday. He hates being away especially when something like this is going on. Ellie hardly ever get sick but the last month or so my sweet girl has had her share. I know she will be fine and this may be just a combo result of everything she had. She does have a cold currently and that vaccine being so new may be the cause...perhaps we will never know. But she is feeling better and I am so grateful the test have been fine so far. Woo Hoo!

Here are some random photos from the week...

Logan the Elf
Logan the Elf is a new tradition we started this year. Ellie still believes in all the Christmas magic and she loves finding this little Elf each morning as he finds a new place to rest after his flight to the N. Pole to tell Santa how well behaved Ellie... and... um... Emma have been.

A newly neutered and declawed Kanye. He is healing well and has already managed to knock some ornaments off the Christmas tree.

Breakfast time!
Northern Cardinal coming in for a bite.

Mr. Squirrel teetering on the plant stand chowing down on the seed I put out for the birds.

Looking Back
River Road in Richmond, Virginia