Friday, February 29, 2008

In my dreams
I dream about food. I'm pretty sure I think about food 24/7. When I'm awake, I think about all of the food I wish I could eat, when I'm asleep, I dream about five course dinners, buffets & treats. I would give anything to go somewhere & load up my plate & stuff myself silly. I guess that's what happens when you're starving.

There are two things I'm craving so much that I think about them every time my stomach growls. Sushi & girl scout cookies. I know I'm not supposed to eat "real" sushi, but I would give my left leg for an all you could eat California roll or some kind of funky cooked concoction. Ugh, it kills me just to type that out. Then the girl scout cookies. Don't even get me started. Once I found out that they were selling in front of the grocery stores, I have been keeping my eyes peeled. I've yet to see them anywhere. Frozen thin mints, caramel delights, shortbread cookies...yummmmm.

The sad thing is I think about all of this food, but there's no way I could keep it down. I'm eating ice chips, bread & butter. Sometimes I'm starving enough that I can keep fries & milkshakes in me. Sometimes I eat it anyway knowing full well that it's not going to stay in. I think I've lost close to 20 pounds (15 for sure) because of the constant nausea. Going through this really makes me appreciate food, the ability to eat & good health.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

The story is out
Last night, Bill & I watched our story air on the 10:00 news. This morning it was added to the news channel website. I'll send out the link to friends & family via email rather than posting it here because a lot of personal information is disclosed (the name of the gym, the insurance company, our small town, etc). If you would like to watch the clip & read about the story, email me.

It was interesting watching myself on the news, crying, of course. At least it wasn't what Oprah calls "the ugly cry". While the whole story wasn't told, it was still a good piece. They left out a lot of the details, like how someone at The Gym stole our insurance premiums & didn't send them into The Insurance Company or how we did file a formal complaint with the Insurance Commission, it was kicked out & we were told we had to file with the California Insurance Commission (which is nearly impossible to navigate). But, at this point, the details don't matter. We got our money back, the situation is over & done with & we won. That's all that I really care about anyway.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Moved & sick
I have to say, I think this move was the most difficult for us out of all of the moves we've ever done. The move from Vegas to Portland with two dogs was almost cake compared to this. The move from Portland to Denver wasn't even difficult. And the move to our small town, while a hellish experience, still didn't top this. Moving when everyone is sick with the flu sucks. A lot.

On Sunday morning we started packing a few boxes before Bill met his co-workers to pack up the moving truck. I was lightheaded, dizzy, nauseas & almost passed out quite a few times. A couple of times when I lost the feeling in my arms & face & felt my legs go weak, I thought for sure I was going to end up on the floor. Bill wasn't much better either, but still had to pack up the house anyway.

Logan & I hung out at the new house & waited for the cable guy while Bill & his crew moved our furniture. They packed up about 90% of the house & got us all moved in. If it weren't for those guys, we would have been utterly screwed. There are just a few odds & ends that we have to go back & get the rest of the days this week, but for the most part, we're finished. Hallelujah.

Bill was able to go back to work on Monday after staying home sick since Wednesday. He got a really bad case of the flu, complete with high temp, body aches & the whole nine yards. I got something that made my lungs burn when I breathed in. Bronchitis or something like that. And now, Logan is sick. He woke up a few times crying in the middle of the night. Then when Bill went in to go wake him up, he got up saying "sick" & shaking a bit. We took his temperature & he's running about 101 right now. Needless to say, we're staying home from preschool.

Not only does he have a fever, but he has a runny nose & he is completely exhausted. Never in his life has he fallen asleep anywhere other than his bed & right now he's passed out on the couch with a fleece blanket & a cuddle cat at his feet. I hope he recovers soon, because between Bill & I being too sick to do anything, I feel really bad for all of the TV & non-activity that's been going on here. Logan really needs some playtime outside of the house.

But, we're in our new house, which is great & everyone is happy that we're here. Logan loves his new room & all of the space he has to run around freely. The animals are very, very happy with Kitty cuddling & purring more than she ever has before. The fact that everyone can stretch out with extra breathing room is a huge bonus & it's making everyone so much more comfortable. The first night we were here, it already felt like home.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

One sorry bunch
So, as if me being sick with HG wasn't enough, Bill got sick with the flu on Wednesday & has been sick ever since then. I got some cruddy sinus/chest crap going on too, but not what Bill has. Between the two of us, our house has fallen apart, Logan has watched TV all day long & lived in his pajama's all day since yesterday (different pairs, thankfully).

The biggest thing, we're moving in the morning & we haven't packed a single box.

We've been literally stuck on the couch for days, ordering food because we're too sick to cook for Logan & trying to survive. The one thing that's made bed rest bearable, is that Bill found an awesome deal on a laptop before getting sick. We've watched so much SpongeBob, Yo Gaba Gaba, Blues Clues, Dora & other kids TV, that's it's been nice to still be in the same room, on the couch, not moving, but still connected to the rest of the world via laptop.

Tomorrow morning Bill's co-workers are helping him move the heavy furniture, then he's going to come back for the little things & box some stuff up. It will take the rest of the week to get everything. I'm really glad we decided to move a week early & we don't have to be out until the 29th. I can't imagine having to pack & move everything in one day with how sick we are.

But, the good news is that we'll be sleeping in our new house tomorrow night. Finally. And I will have my very own sick bathroom. And we won't have to think about moving again for a long time. Awesome.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

So, he's learned a new word
I'm not sure how I'm going to get him to stop this. I've tried ignoring it & that doesn't seem to work. I've tried telling him not to say it & he never listens to me anyway, so what's the point? I'm at a loss because he says "shit" under his breath.

It's been going on for the last couple of weeks & it doesn't seem to be stopping anytime soon. He definitely picked up on when Bill or I drop something, something happens, whatever, we say "shit" under our breath. Now, when Logan drops his cars or something of the like, Logan is whispering "shit" under his breath.

On one hand I think it's kind of funny because he's saying it under his breath rather than yelling it out at the top of his lungs. But ultimately, it is inappropriate & I'd rather not have my 2 year old swearing, especially at playgroup or school. Fortunately, no one else has had the experience of hearing him swear, so at this point, it's only at home.

I guess I'll have to start looking into ways to get toddlers to stop swearing after we move into our house this weekend. Wow, this ought to be an interesting adventure.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

A quick study
In the last few weeks, Logan has started cleaning up after himself when he's finished eating. He used to tell us that he was "all done" (sounds more like "Duh, Duh!" while still using the signs) & then waited for us to clean him up & clean off the table.

Now, he finishes his meal, gets out of his chair & takes his plate to the sink. He reaches up as far as he can & slides all of the dirty dishes in & then waits for us to wipe off his hands & face. I've never once told him that he needed to clean up after himself. It was just something I automatically did for him & expected that I would be doing this for him for a little while longer.

I'm very impressed that he knows to put his dirty dishes in the sink, all by himself - without having to be told or reminded. Almost 30 years into life, Bill is still catching on to this concept.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Over & done with
This morning I received our reimbursement check from The Insurance Company via courier. The investigative reporter came out this afternoon to film the final interview (with Logan running around like a wild hooligan, making Buddha chase him all around the house). They will interview the VP of The Insurance Company tomorrow & before you know it, our story will air on our local news.

With the check in hand, it's finally over & done with.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

I am lucky, but I feel like a schmuck
With this being my second go around with hyperemesis, things are drastically different. The first time, I didn't have any support. I was sick on my own, the house never got cleaned & looked totally gross. It was rough.

This time I have a bunch of friends rallying to support us. Massage friend is going to clean our new home for us before we move in & she's also going to clean this house when we move out (I'm totally going to pay her for her time, too). A bunch of friends have offered to help us pack & move & many have offered to make Bill & Logan dinners so I don't get sick from the smells of food. I can't count how many times people have offered to watch Logan during the day so I can rest in a quiet house. Everyone I know in The Club is offering any & all the help that they can. I am so thankful for them all & I'm amazed at what a great group of friends that I have.

But this doesn't stop me from feeling like a schmuck. I feel so bad for needing so much help. There are bittersweet tears at night, mostly from an overwhelming sense of thankfulness for my friends & everything that they're doing to help us, but also from being so tired of being sick & helpless all of the time. I feel disabled to a point & it really sucks. Then I feel stupid for feeling this way because I knew what I was getting into when we decided to have another baby. I knew that I would be really sick again & I knew that I would need the help of my friends. In fact, knowing that I would have so much support really solidified our decision.

Good grief. I don't know what I feel. But I am incredibly thankful.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Persistence pays off!!!!!!
This afternoon I spent a good 45 minutes on the phone with the VP of The Insurance Company we were in a lawsuit with. The Company was able to do some research on the situation to see where things went wrong. This is how it all went down:

Bill paid for employee benefits only in 2005. In 2006 he paid for employee plus spouse. In February of 2006 we paid for family coverage. From March to June of 2006 The Big City Gym screwed up & only took payments for employee plus spouse coverage. In October 2006, Big City Gym figured out they screwed up, took the premium payments out again, but never sent them to The Insurance Company (yes, this is missing money).

Big City Gym sent paperwork for employee plus spouse coverage to The Insurance Company, but The Company never canceled Logan's coverage. This was a mistake by the Service Center & thus why every time we went in for Logan's well-baby visits, we were never told of a problem. It was recognized in June & retroactive. We began getting billed for the services, we refused to pay since we had paid for it already. In the process of fighting the bills, they sent us to collections in mid 2006. January of '07 the collections agency filled the suit. This was authorized by a non-management employee. Another mistake by The Insurance Company. Our case has prompted procedure changes with The Company so that they improve communication with the collection agency & make sure they go over the case before a suit is filled.

The VP of The Insurance Company then proposed their resolution. They are going to reimburse us the money taken from the collection agency, interest, court costs & then an additional payment of interest (this is like a pain & suffering payment - or paying us interest that we would have made if we had the money in our account). Not only are we getting our money back plus some, they are removing the garnishment from our credit history. All of this will happen by Monday when we get our check via courier.


Tuesday afternoon, the VP of The Insurance Company is getting interviewed by the investigative reporter who's covering the case. I'm not sure if I'll be interviewed again, but I most likely will so that the story is complete with a happy ending.

I cannot even begin to express how relieved & overjoyed I am that this is all over with & with our family finally being righted. There were definitely dark days where I felt defeated & honestly, I don't know if I would have kept on with the persistence & diligence that I had if it weren't for hearing the message of staying positive. This would have never happened if I hadn't called the media either. Without the reporter covering the case, we wouldn't have made this much progress in this short amount of time. I am forever thankful for her efforts in this process.

And I hate to say it like this, but I am unbelievably proud of myself for keeping on with this & sticking up for our family with such fervor. Not allowing us to get bullied by Big Corporate really paid off. It was hard, but it all worked out in the end. It gives me not only a great feeling of accomplishment, but strength as well.

I will never let our family go down & I think I've proven that without any doubt.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

First day of school

This morning Logan went to his first day of preschool-prep. He had so much fun! We got there a few minutes before class started (unlike being 5 minutes late for everything as usual). It was interesting how timid the parents seemed as they all brought their kids into class, as if they were more worried about the "first day of school" since our 2 year olds don't have the slightest idea what school's all about & were freely running around & playing with toys. I filled out some paperwork while Logan got comfortable (which didn't take long) & talked to his teachers about his food allergies. They have snack time & will be having a Valentine's Day party in the next class, so he won't be able to have any cookies.

I finished the paperwork, kissed Logan good-bye & left to run errands. It was strange doing stuff without Logan by my side. I mailed off his birthday party thank-you's (finally) & went to get a smoothie (since this is one of the few things I can keep down right now). By the time I was finished, it was time to go pick up Logan from school (it's only an hour class).

I got there a few minutes early & listened to them play ring around the rosie. I could hear the teachers trying to get Logan to join the circle & I could hear him trying to give "knuckles" to someone. It was pretty cute. After they were finished, the teachers opened the door so the kids could come out to greet their parents. Loan had the biggest smile on his face & gave me a huge hug. He kept talking about the things they did ("stickers", "music") & he just beamed with happiness.

The teachers took some of us inside the classroom to show us what the kids made. Logan got to show me his Valentine's Day bag that he decorated for the party later in the week. He was so proud that he did it all by himself. He gave some of his new friends hugs good-bye, gave his teachers hugs good-bye & he left without having a massive meltdown (which is unusual). When I got him in the car, I asked him about the things he did & learned about at school. He was chattering away with his one-word answers, excited about everything he did. It was awesome. I am thrilled that he had such a good time.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Two is busy
This morning Little M came over for the day because photographer friend was coming back from a trip & her husband had to work. We were very happy to have her over as she & Logan get along very well. So well, in fact, that they pretty much entertain themselves & I just have to make sure the house doesn't burn down.

They ran around in circles screaming, ran up & down the stairs a million times, threw stuffed animals off the second floor into the living room, danced different dances (this part was hysterical), read books to each other, sang songs, colored, ate snacks & lunch & then it was Logan's nap time. Little M doesn't always take a nap since she's older & growing out of it, so we got to hang out on the couch for some quiet time while Logan slept.

After her Dad came to pick her up, I realized that after the baby is born & we have two kids running around the house, not only will it be busy, but it will be noisy. And not just screaming & tantrums, but the sound of two kids playing, constantly talking & just doing stuff.

I can't wait.

I can't wait for Logan to be a big brother, to have a sibling to share life with & although he may not always be nice & share his toys, he'll have someone to hang out with on boring afternoons. Not that Logan is socially deprived, but seeing him play & interact with other kids & having so much fun really makes me so happy for him. There is pure joy on his face. I hope he feels this way when he plays with his little brother or sister, too.

Saturday, February 09, 2008

Therapy cat
In my last pregnancy, I noticed how much more cuddly Kitty was with me. She's a cuddle cat to begin with, but during pregnancy, she's glued to me like white on rice. It's both kind of annoying & super cute.

She's doing the same thing this pregnancy, taking naps with me, purring on my lap while I'm on the computer, never leaving my side. She even meows to get my attention if I'm doing something (like typing) other than petting her. If that doesn't work she reaches up, stretching out her leg (arm?) & touches my cheek with her paw.

It's kind of strange how she can tell I'm pregnant almost instantly & how she tries to comfort me while I'm sick. She really is a therapy cat. There's almost nothing better than laying on the couch with a purring cat spooning your stomach. The vibration that comes from her is very soothing.

Now if she would just stay put at night rather than walking all over my head at 1am.

Friday, February 08, 2008

Eventful morning
It's been a whirlwind of activity this morning. As I was getting ready for another OB appointment, I got a call from the VP of The Insurance Company we're attempting to sue/have investigative reporter interrogate. Nothing really happened in the conversation except for an apology, assurance on a resolution & me crying on the phone about how this whole situation has effected our family. However, I hope things do move forward. It's kind of a big deal when you get a phone call from the VP of a multi-million dollar heath care system. So, I'm taking that as a good sign.

After the phone call, I dropped Logan off at massage friends' house while I went to a follow up appointment from last week. I'm down another 5 pounds for a total of 10 pounds lost in 2 weeks. They were pretty concerned about that. I'm taking 8mg of zofran every 4 hours & I guess that's the max my OB wants me to be on. I'm still having a terrible time at night (not eating dinner, nauseous at the smell of what Bill's cooking himself for dinner, glued to the couch), so she prescribed compazine to take at night. I agreed & then came home to look up the information. I'm not sure I want to take it anymore.

It sounds kind of scary. I'm almost thinking starvation at night & dealing with HG with just the zofran (as much as it's not working at night) might be a better option. This stuff sounds serious. More so than zofran. I'm doing more research on it & other medication options (phenergan is not an option for me) to see what else I can do. It looks like my insurance company isn't going to cover the compazine anyway seeing as though the prescription was delayed & they have to call the insurance company.

This time it might be a good thing.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

This ought to be interesting
Our soon-to-be ex landlords just received our 30 day notice as they've been on vacation, or something like that. Bill got a phone call from one of them this morning saying that they've listed the house up for rent again & they've already had a couple of people interested in seeing the house. Now I have to keep the house "show ready" with a crazy toddler running around & feeling like I constantly have the flu.

I don't know how I'm going to do it & the kicker is we're renting from the "cleaning nazi's" who not only gave us a list of what to clean & when, but with what products & such. They are very anal. I have a feeling I'm not going to meet their standards or I'm going to kill myself trying to. I guess this is just another reason why I can't wait for the end of the month. And another reason I'm praying for a cleaning lady to magically appear at my door step.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Selective listening
I can't count how many times I tell Logan to do something or not do something. I feel like a broken record. But he definitely has selective hearing & today was the proof in the pudding.

This morning we ran an errand to the bank to deposit some checks. Logan was running around while I dug through the diaper bag to find my wallet. Come to find out, I left it at home. I was trying to wrangle him so we could go back home, but the front teller stopped me to see what she could do to help me. Turns out that she could deposit my checks without any ID or account information. Awesome.

While we were taking care of the transaction, Logan started to play with the mini-blinds. I told him sternly that he knows better than that & he's not supposed to play with blinds. I then reminded him that we were going to get "special juice" (smoothies) afterward & if he wasn't going to behave, then we wouldn't get them. That got him back in line pretty quick. I felt kind bad because we would have to go home & get my wallet before going to get smoothies, so he would have to wait a little bit longer. That didn't matter to him. Once we got in the car, he talked about "juice" the whole ride, as if he was reminding me that we needed to go get smoothies.

So, how come I have to tell him a million times in one hour to stop teasing Buddha or stop this, don't do that, come here, go over there, blah, blah, blah, but after telling him about "special juice" once, he never forgets & he certainly won't let me forget. I wish he listened like that all the time. It would save both of us a whole lot of grief.

Monday, February 04, 2008

This is going to be a boo-hoo pity party post, but sometimes you just have to get it out & let it happen. This afternoon is the worst I've felt yet. I've been sick in the bathroom many times & glued to the couch the other times I haven't been throwing up. Fortunately this all spun out of control just as Bill was coming home from work, so Logan & I had a good day otherwise.

We spent the morning with The Club going on a tour of PetCo, where the kids got to see the different animals they had at the store, pet the snakes (which Logan did not want to do), birds & ferrets. They got to feed the fish & look at the turtles & rabbits. It was a great morning with big fat snowflakes falling all day. We came home after running a few errands, ate lunch (pineapple slices for me) & then we both took a nap. When I woke up, I knew I was in for a bad evening.

I've had a cold for a couple of days & the sinus drainage just complicates things with HG. I was hanging out in the bathroom while Logan watched cartoons. I was only "watching" him for a half hour before Bill came home from work. He cooked Logan dinner as I ran up & down the stairs to the bathroom a few times. He gave Logan a bath, brushed his teeth & got him tucked in to bed, all as I'm throwing up.

I felt so bad. Not just sick, but I felt guilty. I'm usually the one who makes him dinner, brushes his teeth & gets his pajamas on. I tuck him into bed, kiss him on the head, wave 'night-night', blow kisses & tell each other "Love" as I close his bedroom door. I'm now missing out on this because I'm too sick to do it at night. After Bill tucked Logan in, I came out of the bathroom crying, thanking him for taking care of Logan. "It's OK, you can't help it", he told me.

I knew going into this that there would be times I would feel guilty because I was too sick to take care of Logan. Knowing is one thing, feeling it is another. Knowing still doesn't stop me from crying about it, nor does it make me feel any better about the situation. I guess tomorrow I'll pull up my boot straps because it's another day. Hopefully it's just 5 more weeks of the really bad stuff. Hopefully I'll get over this cold, be able to keep up with the right dosage of zofran (8mg every 4 hours) & by the end of the first trimester, have this monster under control.

I guess I have to stay positive even when I feel sick & guilty.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

It's a done deal!
There's been a lot going on with the new home search. We found the house that we wanted to move into & even began signing papers for it the day we did the walk through. A few days later the Realtor called us & said we got the house. We were thrilled. Then shortly there after, we got a call from the homeowner saying that the Realtor didn't process our paperwork correctly & ended up getting fired. The homeowner was taking over the whole process & said they would have to go over our paperwork again. I was sure we weren't going to get it anymore.

Bill ended up writing the homeowners a letter explaining what kind of family we are & that our credit doesn't reflect us appropriately (like the wrongful garnishment that we're currently fighting - that's on there). We're doing all of this because we're going to rent the house for 6-12 months & then go with a lease to own option rather than buying it straight out. Because of our selling experiences with the house we moved from, we're commitment shy. Plus, if we aren't buying a new build, we want to try out the house before we actually buy it. If we want to back out of the house for some reason or another, we don't want to have to worry about selling a house in this market again.

So, with this letter, Bill reassured them that we are good people that will take are of their house. It worked & despite our inaccurate credit score, we got the house. For real. On Logan's birthday, we went over & signed all of the papers & handed over the checks. Nobody is occupying the house right now, so we'll be able to move things over a little at a time which is the best option we could have ever hoped for. We should be all moved in by the end of the month.

All I can say is YEA! And what a relief it is!

Saturday, February 02, 2008

Birthday party extravaganza
Whew! It's all over & done with & boy, was it crazy. I planned on getting most everything ready the night before, but I was too sick to really do anything. I got the gift bags together & that was it. I went to bed with the house looking like a disaster & no food ready for the morning either.

I woke up at 6:00am after hitting the snooze button a few times. Logan was up, so I had to get ready to start cooking & cleaning while he watched Cars. I made chocolate cupcakes with vanilla butter cream frosting, blackberry muffins, sausage-hash brown casserole (Bill made this) & then I had a fruit tray, orange juice, apple juice boxes for the kids, coffee & then I ran out of time to make homemade hot chocolate (bummer). Photographer friend was a big help & picked up some bagels & cream cheese for me, too. We had quite the spread.

After cooking & cleaning the house like a crazy person, I jumped in the shower to get ready, fixed Logan's hair & then our first guest arrived. From the original 17 person guest list, 10 were able to RSVP & make it. It was still a big group for our little house, but we made due with people spreading out & playing with the kids in the kitchen.

We ate, laughed & opened presents. I tried to get pictures of Logan, but our camera sucks. It's too slow & I never get a good shot. One of the moms in our playgroup offered to try & get some pictures while I wrote down which gifts were from who. She got a few good ones that were much better than I got. I was so thankful for that.

After being squished in our house for an hour & a half, we got the kids dressed & drove to a nearby park. The original plan was to go sledding & build snowmen. Well, all of our snow has melted, so we just went to the park to play anyway. It was really cold, but the kids still had fun. After being out there for 45 minutes, we were all ready to go home & warm up. Logan was having so much fun, he didn't want to leave despite his fingers looking like red icicles.

It was a great second birthday party & I was VERY thankful that I felt well enough to get everything ready in the morning & actually enjoy the party. I ate food (I hadn't had anything to eat in 2 days) & actually felt pretty good despite the fact. Logan had a great time playing with his friends & opening his presents, too. Oh. And he really enjoyed the food as well. I'm so glad it turned out to be such a great party!

After the party eating his "cake-cake"

This is a video of Logan blowing out his candle & eating his cupcake. Pay no attention to the annoying mom voice

Friday, February 01, 2008

Doctors appointments for all
Talk about a crazy day. It's been one appointment after another. Yesterday morning I woke up feeling really sick. I didn't eat much & I drank even less. I knew I had to call my OB because things can get out of hand quickly with HG. I called to see if I could increase my dosage & they wanted to see me.

This morning Logan woke up with a really bad cough. It was so bad that I thought it was serious (like croup or pneumonia). We got him in earlier this morning before I went in for my appointment. It turns out he does have croup. It's a very mild case & he doesn't need any medication (thankfully). He's not even contagious, so we can still have his birthday party tomorrow. After getting the all clear, I dropped him off at photographer friends' house so I could go to my appointment.

By the time of the appointment, I hadn't had anything to eat or drink for almost 24 hours. They checked the urine sample for ketones to see how dehydrated I was. There were some, but not a lot, so I didn't have to get re-hydrated today. The Doctor increased my dosage of zofran & told me that if anything changed over the weekend, I would have to come in immediately. I still have to go in to get checked out again next week. I'm really happy that they are so proactive about not letting me get so bad that I'll need IV's or another trip to urgent care.

So, Logan is napping & resting after a busy day (that started at 6:30AM) & I'm going to hit the sack & get some rest so I can at least try to get some energy to clean the house & get everything ready for Logan's party in the morning.

I can't wait until the weekend is over with.