Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Well if you don't know...

Today's been a non-productive drag of a day, and I can't believe it's not even 4pm as I'd happily go to bed right now!  Sam woke up far too early given that it was a bonus day off school, so we spent a couple of hours in our pyjamas, watching Mr. Tumble.  A follow up call to the GP surgery (and an apology from them for not phoning back as promised, yesterday) confirmed that Sam's GP had written a prescription for an alternative cream for his thrush, since there's a manufacturing problem and no one has the initial one in stock. Dispenser promised to fax it across to our local pharmacy, so we got dressed and set out for the 3 mile round trip. Myself, Sam, the buggy, and the guitar! However our pharmacist informed us that there is also a manufacturing problem with the replacement that had been prescribed. Oh FFS!!!! But, being the lovely man that he is, he simply said "Leave it with me, I'll sort it out. Come back this afternoon."

 So we went home, and attempted to relax in the garden for a while - easier said than done. Briefly, this was Sam's attempt at enjoying the sunshine:
If anyone was in any doubt, then yes - the television is playing a DVD of Something Special.

After a brief period of not relaxing, Sam asked to go to the park. So we went to the park. He didn't want to walk the two minutes down the road - I politely informed him that if he wasn't able to walk that far, there was little point going to the park at all. At the park, Sam didn't want to go on anything. His main objective was to get himself on the opposite side of the gate to Mummy - it didn't seem to matter who was on which side!  Eventually we came out of the park and sat on the grass patch that backs onto it. Crying. A good twenty minutes was spent here, with no explanation. I was running out of ways to ask "What is wrong?" when finally Sam answered me - "I don't know!" Oh flipping heck boy, what chance do I stand if you don't even know what's up?! At last Sam was persuaded that we could sit on the grass to cry at home, so we gathered ourselves up and left - on the condition that Sam didn't have to walk, but could have a 'cuddle' instead (long ago he realised that "Give baby a cuddle" was much cuter than just "Carry me").

At home, it was clear Sam was very tired, so I thought if we snuggled up on the sofa he might fall asleep. Nope! He came very close a few times, but always realised just in time to rouse himself. So I rang the pharmacy and, wahoooo, they had managed to get hold of the cream we needed. Typically, there had been one tube in the GP's dispensary all along, but because of the prescription system we are not allowed to collect from there as we live too close. Regardless, we jumped in the car and went to fetch the cream which is now doing its job smeared all over Sam's rash.

No prizes for guessing what we're doing now......Hello, I'm Justin, let's go and meet my friends....

S xx

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

How does your garden grow?

Well, it appears Sam should have been called Mary - the contrary! After half an hour of determined "We are going to enjoy the sunshine" from Mummy, and "No, I want to watch CBeebies, sob" from Sam, I gave in and asked if he wanted to go inside to watch CBeebies. "Yes please Mummy". He jumped out of his tent in the garden and ran over to where I was gathering things from where I had been sitting. But instead of following me inside, he proceeded to just sit in my chair, very happily. Enjoying the sunshine on HIS terms, it would appear!

On a note of development, Sam has discovered the personal pronoun 'me'. Sitting in the garden with his lunch, Sam wasn't really eating. At my prompt "Are you eating some more beans on toast Sam?" he responded incredulously "ME????" whilst pointing to himself. (Incidentally, he didn't eat anymore beans. Just as when in Boots he asked for Wotsits, and on receiving a packet ate three. Or like last night when he had one bite of a banana before announcing he had finished.)

Oh, and I'm now officially blaming Sam for my weight! He requested some chocolate spread whilst in Tesco, so I bought him some. At home this afternoon, I asked if he'd like a chocolate spread sandwich. "No thank you. Mummy's chocolate." Mummy's chocolate? "Yes, Mummy chocolate sandwich." You want Mummy to eat a chocolate spread sandwich? "Yes!" Well, I always do as I'm told...... ;)

S xx

Cometh the spring, cometh the thrush

And no, unfortunately I don't mean the feathery singing kind. I mean the red, itchy, oozing, fungal kind. Which my poor little boy has got at both ends of his system :( As if the meningitis scare wasn't enough, he's been suffering with a cold ever since, and then got a nasty nappy rash at the end of last week - couldn't get appointment with doctor until Monday, and by the time Sam got home after the weekend he had got the infection in his mouth too :( Horrible!  So he's now snotty, sore, and has a very gunky mouth.

Doesn't seem fair somehow, but then again my friend's little girl has just been released from Nottingham QMC after three weeks in ICU, and this isn't unusual for her.  So really, Sam and I have got it easy. We need to remember that - things could always be much, much worse.

So, after a very lazy morning we're shortly heading off into town - we need antifungal cream (getting the medication yesterday was such a faff: our usual pharmacy had neither the cream nor the medicine, they ordered in the medicine but couldn't get the cream at all; we collected the medicine last night after it had been delivered, and tried other pharmacies for the cream but no luck. Hopefully the big Boots in town will prove more successful), and both of Sam's pairs of glasses are currently broken so a trip to the opticians is also in order!

Hopefully this afternoon we can sit in the garden and enjoy the sunshine, like we did on Sunday:

S xx

Friday, 23 March 2012

Much better week :)

Things are much better in the Sara&Sam household!  Although we're still waiting for official blood culture results form the hospital, Sam is much improved and now back to his normal cheeky self. He's finally started eating a bit here and there, and is drinking huge amounts of fluid which is great.

We've had a relatively calm week, after the stresses of the weekend. On Monday we headed to Lis and Alan's to enjoy 'Mothering Monday' - lovely little walk, saw some gorgeous daffodils, and then a yummy lunch at The Teahouse In The Woods in Woodhall - bizarrely, now an Italian restaurant! [Photos on Lis's blog, here] Sam was hard work and unhappy, but it was nice to get out and about.  Tuesday saw Sam back at school, then we went for dinner with my Dad, after which my friend Claire came round for a few hours - not seen her for a few weeks, so it was great to catch up.

 Last night (Thursday) Lis and Alan came over to stay, and babysat while I went out with Lilly - trip to Sheffield O2, to see Noah and the Whale :) (Also known as Jonah and the Whale, Noah and the Machine...!).  Getting there was slightly stressful, due to Lincoln traffic and GoogleMap directions (lies, all lies!) but we made it in plenty of time.  Support act was the very cute but strong voiced Emmy the Great, followed by a great gig by the smart-suited boys :) Far more musically talented than I had realised, and they seemed to be genuinely enjoying themselves which is always a bonus!

A great first gig to start off the year, next up is Example in Leeds, supported by Wretch 32.

S xx

Friday, 16 March 2012

Aaand breathe

Well, what a week.

Sam was out of sorts when he arrived home on Sunday night, but we kept busy visiting family and then he had an early night. Lis joined us on Monday morning for a day of shopping, and Sam's mood didn't improve much but he was snuffly so we dosed him up with Calpol and that seemed to help. While he was at school on Tuesday, Lis and I had ANOTHER (very expensive) day of shopping, successful but exhausting, and I also did some painting in the kitchen. Tuesday evening saw a shattered Sam, who still refused to eat and went to bed very early, waking a couple of times in the night but happy to go off to school on Wednesday. Once Sam was at school Lis headed home, and I went to bed for a four hour nap!! I just can't take the pace anymore ;)  Anyway, dinner out with my Dad on Wednesday night and then bed.

Thursday I planned to catch up on all the housework whilst Sam was at school: what I didn't plan was to get a phone call just after 9.30am saying Sam had a rash that was concerning them, would I come and fetch him please.  So drive across town, collect Sam, and take him straight to A&E. I defy any parent to not react to 'non-blanching rash' with 'OMFG meningitis'. Expected triage nurses to say he was fine and send him home, but no. The rash coupled with his lethargy, refusal to eat or drink, and general ill health was enough to get the doctor worried, she contacted the paediatrician who demanded he be admitted straight to a ward. On the ward, blood cultures were requested - inserting a cannula into an unanaesthetised wriggly four year old is HARD. I went with Sam into the treatment room initially, hoping my presence would calm him, but after multiple attempts in both hands from two paediatricians, a time out was called. Sam and I went back to his room while a more senior consultant came down to help. This time I asked the nurses to take him in, while I sat in his room and sobbed. Eventually one came back to tell me they had succeeded if I wanted to go in - such a relief to see my little man relaxed in the arms of a nurse, cannula safely in hand.  The blood stained fingers poking out from his bandage were testament to the difficulty faced though.

So with the cannula in and the rash getting worse, antibiotics were started, as well as paracetamol to bring down his temperature. Then onto a saline drip, little man was clearly very dehydrated. But what a change as soon as the IV started, he suddenly woke up and became aware of what was going on.  And then the news that the blood cultures take at least 48 hours in the lab, plus transport time, so we would be transferred to a different ward as we were in the day unit which closes at 9pm. Oh god, a night in hospital.

Still refusing to eat or drink, Sam chilled out with CBeebies on his personal TV whilst my Dad visited, and a couple of brilliant friends brought pyjamas and colouring books for Sam, and chocolate for Mummy :)  Once Sam was asleep Grandad stayed with him, while I nipped home for overnight clothes etc. Realising at 9pm that I hadn't eaten since 5pm the day before, I discovered a sandwich in the bag of goodies from Lilly and Joy :)

A bad night ensued, with babies who didn't stop crying, nurses who didn't stop checking Sam's blood pressure, and an IV drip which didn't stop alarming all night - even the nurse was sick of it, and she wasn't trying to sleep!!  But this morning brought better news - Sam woke up much brighter, and even had a drink. His IV fluids were about finished so they weren't renewed, and he ate a bit of breakfast. Then came some fantastic news - although the results weren't back to rule out meningitis or septicemia, all the doctors thought he was greatly improved and as the rash was now improving, he could go home as long as we return first thing tomorrow for the next lot of antibiotics, and possibly Sunday morning too.  The nurse tried to give him his antibiotics IV before we left but his cannula had become bent, no wonder after the hassle of getting it in, so tomorrow he will have them injected instead. In a way this is a pain, as after the stress of the cannula we will now have to go through the stress of injection too, but it does mean he can have a bath tonight, and I won't need to be on constant high alert to make sure he doesn't tug at the lead!

So, now we're home. And he seems alright - although 24 hours semi-naked has convinced him that he shouldn't ever have to wear clothes, and he is currently sitting on the sofa without so much as a nappy (I'm trying to stay calm....)! The rash has calmed, his is rehydrated, and he has eaten a little bit this afternoon. Hopefully he will have an early night tonight and get a good sleep, and so will I!  Much calmer now, and not overly concerned about the blood cultures as I think they'll be negative, but my goodness that was more stress than we needed or wanted yesterday. All serves to reaffirm the fact that my little man is an absolute angel, so brave and patient (unlike his mother, or father). As ever, nurses were sorry to see him go, what a twinkling little star :)

Mummy loves you Sam Sam!

 S xx

Tuesday, 6 March 2012


Steak and roasted mixed veg for dinner. Been looking forward to it all day. Got all the prep done while Sam was at school, so just final bits this evening. Left Sam watching Justin's House while I served up dinner. Joins me in the kitchen, tantrum. Finally serve dinner, come back through to front room - drink all over my seat on the sofa. Not happy. Put down dinner, proceed to clear up drink and turn over cushion. Nearly achieved. Sam doesn't want dinner - flips my plate over. Sofa and floor now covered in delicious steak and veg-chips, with jammy sauce. Actually screamed. Cheeky child told me to calm down. Sam now in bed. Mummy hungry, tired, and on brink of tears. With no idea what to have for dinner. Children can be very testing.

S xx

Monday, 5 March 2012

That Justin Fletcher

Hmm, Justin Fletcher. The name that any parent with a preschooler cannot fail to know. He's got a lot to answer for...

He's responsible for Sam wandering around the house picking up random objects and shouting "hello" (trying to work out which one is today's 'telephone', like in Justin's House).

He's repsonsible for Sam walking around the shops saying "Hello, I'm Justin. Let's go and meet my friends" or "Oooh, Mr. Tumble's spotty bag, thank you" a la Something Special.

He's responsible for Sam running all over going "Oooh ooh aah aah ooh ooh aah aah, I'm being a monkey" (from the episode in which Mr. Tumble impersonates many animals).

He's responsible for Sam's tantrums when I turn the TV off.

He's responsible for the fact that when I turn the TV off, Sam goes to sit in front of the mini-TV, face against the screen, hoping Mr. Tumble will magically appear.

He's responsible for Sam stealing Aunty Lilly's handbag when we're out shopping and attempting to hang it up on every available post, then doing the 'magic' "to send the spotty bag to Mr. Tumble" - "Take your finger, touch your nose, blink three times, and off it goes".  Except it never does...

He's responsible for the ridiculous amount of spotty stuff around my house, as everything spotty must automatically mean Mr. Tumble.

He's responsible for all the ridiculous songs that get stuck in my head: Gigglebiz gigglebiz; The instrument song; Justin's House Theme; Hello Hello; Sing a song day; the list goes on, and on.

Then again....

He's responsible for Sam being able to communicate using Makaton.

He's responsible for Sam learning about places we've not yet been.

He's responsible for Sam getting up to sing and dance.

and most importantly
He's responsible for Sam occasionally sitting quietly for 10 minutes, long enough for Mummy to chill out with a cup of tea!

Okay Justin, you have your merits. And Sam loves you, so who am I to criticise??

S xx

P.S. As I write this, I can hear 'ooh, look, Mr. Tumble's spotty bag' coming from the other room - brief investigation shows that no, it's Mummy's non-spotty handbag!

Sunday, 4 March 2012

Another mini-milestone

So, apparently Sam can take the lid off yoghurt pots. And does NOT need my help: "NO Mummy, go and sit down". Oops, silly me for trying to help! As I sat down, I grabbed my camera ready to take a photo of yoghurt-explosion, but how wrong I was - Sam skilfully removed the lid (in one piece), gave it a lick, and then handed it to me. Smart arse!

The weather here seems determined to remind us that it is not spring yet - following some gorgeous days last week which I spent sitting outside in the sunshine, today we have had downpours of rain and snow!

S xx