Wednesday, March 30, 2011

If only SELF PITY were the mother of GRATITUDE ...

 Well, for those of you who aren’t on Facebook or aren’t in the family, here is a plethora of important yet woefully non-poetic Becker Family Updates:

Our Sam has been having sleep seizures.

He’s had two that we know of, the first of which sent us on an all-night ER fun run. This was back in February. After that, he had an EEG and then saw a pediatric neurologist, who said he had an 80% chance of NOT having another one but gave us an Rx for Diastat (look it up).

So the second seizure was like a stomach punch because we really thought the first one was a total random fluke and that he wouldn’t have another one.
The second one was Friday night, so first thing Monday morning, I called the neurologist’s office to give a full report. And let me just say that trying to communicate with a specialist at a major children’s hospital is probably about as easy as calling up Barack Obama.

I finally talked to a nurse at the pediatric neurology office today after leaving a message on Monday morning. We played phone tag forever. I called to explain about the most recent seizure and ask where to go from here, and I also expressed concern that there hasn't been any sort of imaging done to look for physical damage caused by Sam’s three recent falls (out of a grocery cart, accidentally dropped by his brother, and tripped on the patio). The nurse was very thorough and wrote down everything I said (I made her read it back to me), and she got it all right and worded it well for the doctor's message. Score!

Today she said that the doctor respects my concern about the head injuries, but does not feel that Sam's seizures are being caused by his falls b/c he did not lose consciousness during any of them. This corroborates what everyone else has said -- his regular pediatrician & the ER doctors.

But the neurologist does feel that Sam needs to have another EEG. This one will last 2 hours and will involve us keeping him up very late the night before and getting him up very early on the day of the test. The hope is that he will fall asleep during the EEG and perhaps even have a seizure. Apparently sleep deprivation is often one of the causes. This whole thing terrifies me on many levels, but I'm just gonna suck it up.


Because really, I’d be fine if the sun would just come out.

I'm also sad right now because we've had numerous tragedies at work. In addition to several other deaths of my colleagues’ family members, our beloved custodian, James, died unexpectedly over the weekend. He was morbidly obese, so it wasn't completely surprising, but he has a bunch of relatively young kids and was such a jovial addition to my work week. Nevermind the fact that he's the one who walked in on me pumping last semester. RIP sweet James.

And now, a turn in a better direction.

Whenever I am writing comments on students papers, I always try to say several good things first before getting down to the nitty gritty “this is total crap” euphemisms. But tonight I’m reversing that order and trying to end this post with good news.

John had a great baseball scrimmage last night. He stopped a ball really well while playing short stop. He also got a base hit and made it home. How is it that I'm falling in love with such a boring sport? Sam and I cheer him on like complete idiots, but man is it fun! Never thought I'd say that about baseball.

Moreover, Brian's soccer team won last night! After his game, he went to a USA soccer game downtown, by himself, in the rain. Somehow all I remember is something about parking  a mile away and sprinting to the stadium after getting caught in traffic.  Whoever wrote that Men from Mars, Women from Venus book needs to get the Nobel prize just for the title.

And finally ... the most uplifting and anti-self-pity story I know ...

My friend Sara, who lost her baby @ 38 weeks gestation and then 4 weeks later discovered her stage 4 colon cancer, got a GREAT report this week. Her cancers have shrunk significantly. She has to continue the chemo, but is thrilled of course, as are her husband and her 3 and 5 year old little boys. If you don’t believe people can turn lemons into lemonade, then her blog will make you a believer:


Thursday, March 24, 2011

Can you tell Jane has been here recently?

Fab photos = Jane Becker Visit.

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Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Sam Dancing

This is for you, Grandaddy!

Happy 16 months to Sam B., the dancer!

Toddlers & Cadillacs

When John was Sam's age now (16 months), we went to Chattanooga to the aquarium. It was overall a decent trip, but I distinctly remember that no one slept much and John was way more interested in this pint-sized Cadillac Escalades than the fish.

I remember the exact layout of the hotel room and what it looked like at midnight, 2, 4, and 6 a.m. in various shades of moon/dawn light.

I also remember how distraught the pint-sized owner of the pint-sized cadillac became as he was forced by his father to drive around a toddler in his battery-operated treasure.
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Thursday, March 17, 2011

Linemen, Bathrobes, & Captain America

There is too much to catch you up on, especially in the way of General Boy Unwellness, but such is the state of windy March. Oh, does that have you interested? Well, I hate the details, but here are the main ideas:

-John has crazy allergy-induced asthma and coughs all day. But more importantly, he has coughed all night every night for about two weeks now and missed nearly a whole week of school. All of this despite his chiropractic adjustments, commitment to taking Vitamin C, fish oil, and probiotics for immune-boosting properties, and avoidance of both gluten & dairy. Oh, and did I mention his daily pharmaceutical regimen? Singulair, Asmanex, Zyrtec, and Albuterol as needed.

-Sam has a raging double ear infection and had a reaction to his ear drops which caused abdominal hives. Then he fell and busted his nose -- likely due to dizziness caused by equilibrium issues -- and I nearly got a ticket rushing him & his bloody nose & hivey tummy to the doctor's office earlier today. (Verdict: nose = OK; ears = NOT ok). Now he's on another series of antibiotic injections ... despite his tubes, his chiropractic adjustments, and his committment to taking Vitamin C, fish oil, and probiotics for immune-boosting properties. Despite the fact that he is off of gluten & dairy. No regular pharmaceuticals for him so far, but why is it that I see it in the near future?

In other, more upbeat news, Sam owns two superfun bathrobes, and John has a plethora of weapons.
The End.
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Sunday, March 13, 2011

How John Watches TV These Days

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I know.

Whatever you're thinking about how edible he is, I already know.
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Grandparent Visit!

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Sunday, March 06, 2011

The Jail in Alabama for Bad Pencils

Today, in a fit of frustration about his pencil not erasing correctly, John yelled out, "AAAaaahhh!!!  This pencil needs to go to jail in Alabama!"  So I encouraged him to write out his anger in a story.  This is the result:

The Jail in Alabama for Bad Pencils

By John Becker

       Once upon a time, there was a jail in Alabama for bad pencils. One day, a new bad pencil got in jail for not erasing right. Then that new bad pencil got out of jail. The other pencils didn’t see him when he escaped. When he got out of jail, the keepers didn’t see him.


John Becker

Not sure why he chose to end with a signature rather than "The End," but he was adamant that the conclusion be like this.  We were so impressed with this creative outburst that we let him strike a match and light a candle, which has been a domestic obsession of late.
Send me your children.  I will channel their anger.   
As I type this, John is setting up the chest [sic] board, humming Britney Spears under his breath, and yelling for his dad to please hurry up so he can beat the pants off him.
I love my John-John.

Saturday, March 05, 2011

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Jewels found on John-John's camera

Tonight I decided it was time to clean memory cards. I have two cameras, so this is always a huge endeavor. But tonight I started with John's little point and shoot, with which he is obsessed. I never actually got to my own photos.

Here's what I found, divided into categories:

First, the self portraits:

Then there are the butt shots:

And finally, what I call "Weird Family Photos": (no offense to anyone -- in most of them, I am the freak)

One of them has a too-big shirt.  The other has none.  And I have salmon-colored sweat pants.  Good gracious.

Heavenly days.

Love. It.

All those missing teeth.  And my freckles!  Yet no boy freckles are to be found.   :-(

There's a fine line between choking and hugging.

All were excited about this one.

Onward and upward,

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