A Hard Lesson Learned

Yesterday was a bad day. It started out as a great day, but I’ve learned that things can change very quickly. Before I go on, I need to say that I honestly didn’t want to post about this as I feel very ashamed of myself. The story that I’m about to tell is about a lapse in judgment on my part and, as you can tell from the headline, a very hard lesson learned.

Yesterday was the scariest day of my life thus far (that I can remember).

So what happened?

Well, if you follow my blog, you know that Charlotte, my almost one-year old daughter, has a milk protein allergy. We had her tested back in March after she had some formula and had a reaction at daycare.

You can probably guess where this is going now, but here’s what happened yesterday afternoon.

It was a gorgeous day here and we decided to take a walk up to the local shopping center that’s about a half mile from our house and grab some drinks at the cafe. I packed some rice milk and snacks for Charlotte and we headed out.

We arrived at we ordered our drinks. An iced coffee for Jed and a smoothie for me.

I’ve worked really hard to always remember to ask about milk in things that I eat and obviously anything that Charlotte is going to eat, so I asked about the smoothie (since it was a veggie and fruit smoothie) if there was any dairy in it. They said “no”. So I ordered and while we were waiting, the waitress asked if I wanted the protein. I didn’t even think about it and said “yes”.

So we sit down at our table and enjoy our drinks. Charlotte is on my lap having her snack and rice milk. Then, without thinking, I see if she wants a sip of my smoothie. Of course she does, she’s been pointing at it! So I give her a small taste, and then another. That’s it.

We finish and start walking home.

On the way home she starts coughing. She’s had a bit of a cold/allergies the past couple of days with a runny nose and watery eyes, so we think it’s that.

When we get home I notice that she’s just not acting right and when I look at her face I see red splotchy patches. I start to freak out! I gave her some Benadryl as instructed on our sheet from the allergist. I think about it and the light bulb goes off. I called the cafe and asked if the “protein” they put in the smoothie is a protein powder. They said yes. Oh S&*t! Protein powder has whey in it, a milk product.

I start to freak out even more. My husband and I start watching her closely and try to figure out what to do next. Her face is a little red and she seems in discomfort, but those are the only symptoms so far. Then she vomits a little bit. Of course it’s also Sunday afternoon and we can’t take her in to her doctor’s (and most other offices are closed), so we debate between calling the emergency line for our doctor or just going to the ER. We have an EpiPen, but it doesn’t seem like we need to use that as her lips, and airways seem fine. Then she vomits again, but this time it’s a LOT!

Without hesitation we got her in the car and went to the ER. They were great about getting us in right away and they started checking her vitals. She had a little wheezing, but her airways were open and there wasn’t any swelling of the tongue. Her lip was a little swollen and she had hives on her skin where it had come in contact with where she had thrown up. Her face was getting better.

They ended up giving her a shot of epinephrine and a breathing treatment. They also gave her Benadryl and a steroid that we will continue to give her through tomorrow night, just for any possible delayed reactions. They monitored her for an hour and after everything she was evaluated and good to go home.

Amidst all the nurses that came in and out, taking her blood pressure, listening to her chest, giving her medicine and shots, she was a trooper. The hospital was so good with her and had someone on hand to help with babies in comforting them and giving them toys to play with. I am so appreciative of each and every one of them.

This was something that Jed and I knew was probably, eventually going to happen, but I still can’t believe it did. And even worse, I feel ashamed and terrible that I was the one that caused it. I had a lapse in judgment giving her a taste of my drink. To think that it was only a couple of sips mixed with a lot of other stuff that she’s not allergic to and she still had that bad of a reaction is scary. I didn’t do it on purpose, I just wasn’t thinking about the “protein” and what that was.

I am grateful that it happened with us and that we took her to the ER. There will never be any hesitation if this ever occurs again, which I pray it will not!

Even though I am ashamed of this situation, I wanted to share it because it’s a human error and I need to remind myself that we all make them. But it’s the scariest thing I’ve been through and it reminds me of how fragile and precious life is.

I am happy to report that Charlotte was back to her normal self when we got home and playing as usual. We will go in to her doctor later this week for a follow-up evaluation.

The Big 3-0!

This Thursday I’ll be turning 30! That’s weird to me. I don’t feel 30 (but I probably look it!).

A lot of people bring up that this is a big birthday, but honestly, it feels no different to me. I think I can attribute that to the fact that I have an almost one-year-old that I’m so focused on that I sometimes forget about me.

But the idea of age to me has changed. I’m not as worried anymore about what I’ve accomplished by when. But I have spent the last few weeks reflecting on how much has happened in 30 years, and it’s a lot! I think about the days I used to play traveling soccer, graduating high school and college, starting my first job, getting my license. There’s so much I haven’t thought about in a long time.

Even within the last 10 years things have changed dramatically! I graduated college, I moved to Des Moines, I’ve changed jobs multiple times, moved into our first home, took in Tank and Dora, got married, and had a beautiful daughter! And this to me seems like just the beginning!

I also think about some of the hard times, the friends and family we have lost, and how I wish they were here to share moments with us. But I know that’s life and we have to take the bad with the good.

So with this reflection on the last 30 years, I thought it would be fun to make a list (because Jed knows how much I LOVE lists). Check it out!

30 Things I’ve Learned Over The Past 30 Years:

1. Face-planting off lawn chairs is not a good idea

2. Rocks aren’t food

3. Big brother’s will torment you as often as they can, but they’ll always love you

4. Never lie to your parents. They’ll figure it out eventually.

5. Take risks

6. AAA is a great service

7. Trees are for climbing

8. Soak up as much sun as you can (winter’s are rough)

9. Some people shouldn’t be in charge of babysitting

10. Just ask. People’s answers may surprise you.

11. Be careful what you wish for

12. High school is only a short moment in time

13. It’s a good idea to wear pads when you Rollerblade

14. Hobbies are good things to have

15. Little brothers can be annoying, but they’re a lot of fun to have around

16. Vinyl never goes out of style

17. Trust is a hard thing to regain

18. The rides at Chuck E. Cheese are for kids only

19. True friends never leave

20. Dogs are like kids

21. Money is better when earned

22. Move in with someone before you marry them (you’ll learn a lot)

23. Travel as much as you can

24. Your dad will bail you out of jail

25. Try everything once

26. Family might drive you nuts sometimes, but they’ll always be there for you, so spend lots of time with them

27. Everyone needs help at some point

28. Don’t say it, do it

29. Kids are a lot of work, but are totally worth it

30. Nothing is unmanageable

And because most people really just want to see photos, I tried to collect a sampling from the last 30 years. Enjoy!

That’s it. I’m about to turn 30 and my daughter is about to turn 1! Can’t wait.

Charlotte Mae: Eleven Months

IMG_0720Yesterday was exactly 11 months! Only one more month until she’s a year. Where did the time go?! I’m so behind on planning her first birthday, but hopefully I’ll have time while on our vacation (which we are on now!) to get invites out!

As always, we’ve had a lot going on. That’s life. This past month Jed had to travel for work for two weeks (two separate weeks) so that was a bummer as it’s very difficult to get anything done without some extra hands to help with the dogs and Charlotte.

Before he left we got to go to family day at the air base. Now that we have a kid I don’t feel as awkward about going since it’s kid-focused. Most everything was too old for Charlotte, but we did get in a bouncy house for a couple of minutes and also met some superheroes!

We had some misfortunes this past month as well. Charlotte got a staph infection. This was really the first infection she’s had. The doctor said these have been becoming more common, especially in children with eczema because of their dry, patchy skin that can break open. That’s pretty much what happened with Charlotte. It was mainly on her wrist, but small blisters spread on her face and scalp. Poor girl. We got an antibiotic and antibacterial cream for the spots. It cleared up but it’s looking like it may be resurfacing. We’re CONSTANTLY putting lotion and cream on her all day to keep her skin protected, but it can get difficult.

We also had some pretty severe storms and heavy rains and after one of the storms (not during it), a big tree limb fell in our front yard. Thankfully no one was hurt and there wasn’t really any damage, but it was just one more thing that took up unwanted time.

Thankfully it happened the Friday Jed got home from traveling so he could take care of it :)

IMG_0694

But more about Charlotte, since this is her 11 month update!

She has quite the little (or big) personality. She will now throw temper tantrums (laying face down on the floor). It’s kinda cute and funny since they don’t last long . . . yet. She pulls herself up on EVERYTHING she can and we got her a walker that she uses really well, except for the steering part. Her balance is pretty good, but she hasn’t quite ventured to trying to take steps away from holding onto something. I think she likes going fast so if she wants to get anywhere in a hurry, she’ll do her butt scoot.

She also gets visibly frustrated now (and sometimes quite easily). Not that she didn’t before, but it’s more often now. So if she can’t do something, she’ll wine and throw her hands around. But usually it’s over quickly and we try not to interfere too much so she can learn to do things for herself.

I think I said in last month’s post, but she LOVES to eat. If there is food around, she wants to eat it. I can barely get her meals ready before she realizes what I’m doing and starts whining to be fed. She would probably eat all the time if she could. I’m glad she’s not too picky. She still doesn’t like bananas (we’ve tried a lot) and she didn’t really take to blueberries the other week, but she’ll pretty much eat anything else, which has been nice.

It’s still difficult with her milk protein allergy to make food interesting since so many things have milk in them, but I’ve found a couple of websites that have great non-dairy recipes that I’m going to start trying.

I feel very selfish when I say this, but it’s been hard avoiding dairy and especially cheese since I LOVE cheese. I do it because I know it’s for her benefit and obviously I don’t want her to get sick or have a reaction, but let’s just say that it will be nice when I’m done nursing, which may be soon because I’m not producing as much and barely can pump enough for her three days of daycare. We have started to introduce her to rice milk to help her get a taste for it since that’s what we’ll be transitioning to after her 1st birthday. So we give it to her with her snacks and table food meals.

Her eating schedule is as follows: Breast milk five times a day (7, 10, 1, 4 and 7:30). Breakfast is usually around 7:45-8 and consists of Plain Cheerios or Puffs and fruit. Lunch is usually around noon and is almost always a meat, vegetable, grain and fruit and dinner is the same around 6. We also will have morning and afternoon snacks if she’s hungry, which usually consist of Gerber Graduates Lil’ Crunchies (Garden Tomato) or fruit.

On the subject of food, she’s figured out that the dogs will eat what she drops and she now purposely drops food for them. They are going to get so fat! Well, Dora is because she can see the food. Unfortunately Tank doesn’t get as much because he’s blind from this diabetes.

She has three teeth now. Two bottoms and one top. The top just popped through last week and I’m wondering if the other one isn’t too far behind as she’s been fussy and drooling a lot.

In terms of activity, this girl never stops when she’s awake. She constantly moves and doesn’t sit and play in one spot for long (which is why it’s difficult to get anything done). She loves books, mostly flipping the pages and anything with textures and flaps. We got her some building blocks and she’s really good at mimicking what you do, so she can stack, although she prefers to knock things down. She also loves putting things in and taking them out. She likes to take out her dirty laundry and throw it around. Sometimes she’ll put it back in!

She loves the dogs, as always. So much that she tries to tackle them. She loves wrestling with all her stuffed animals and Jed and I.

She talks a lot. No real words yet, but definitely more conversational tones.

And lastly, I’m excited to say that we are officially on vacation up at our cabin in Northern Minnesota! This is Charlotte’s first time up and I’m so excited to see her experience all these new things – like swimming in the lake, going on the boat and other fun adventures. Hopefully we’ll get a little R&R too! It’s just the three of us (plus Tank and Dora) until Tuesday and then my parents are joining us on Tuesday and my uncle on Wednesday. So it’s going to be a full house, but really fun to have everyone here.

Charlotte Mae – Eleven Months

Likes: Animals, bath time, water, the dogs, blowing out lights (I’ll have to explain in another post!), watching other people (especially kids), eating, walking along furniture, books, drinking with straws, playing with toys or anything really, going for walks, making faces, talking, whining, smiling

Dislikes: Getting her diaper changed and being told “no”

Clothes: Still in 9-12 month, but mostly 12 month. Diaper size is 3, but we had to move her up to size 4 overnite diapers at night because she started having more blowouts at night. One particular morning I got to walk into a literal S&*% storm. She had blown out and there was bits on her floor, the crib, the sheets were covered and some even got between crib and wall. It was one of our worst moments to date. I felt so bad for her, but she was fine apart from being mad that I had to change and clean her up before feeding her. So, that is why we are now in bigger diapers at night and so far (knock on wood), it’s been working!

Looking Forward To: Her first birthday! I can’t wait to see her dig into her smash cake and blow out her candle (which I think she may be able to do!).

And a look at the last 11 months!

And on a completely different note (and will be a different post), my 30th birthday is this month! Oh, boy.

Charlotte Mae: Ten Months

Ten Months

Ten Months

Another month old and only two months shy of a year! That’s crazy to me.

May was a super busy, but fun month. We had Charlotte’s baptism, Mother’s Day, Birthday’s (3 of them), two graduations, a wedding reception, and a work anniversary party. So there was lots of activity for Charlotte and time with friends and family. We also had some unplanned events including Jed having an allergic reaction to who know’s what that caused his eyes to swell up so bad that he could hardly see! That put him out for a few days and while I’m very happy he is better and it wasn’t worse, I wish we knew what it was! Sadly our boy dog, Tank, has gone almost completely blind from cataracts, a symptom of his diabetes. We are now up to two insulin shots a day with him and while I feel bad about his eyesight, he hasn’t been suffering as he still hangs out with us and has his usual energy. Hopefully Dora can be a better litter mate and help him instead of taunt him.

That was our May. Oh wait, we also put in sod so that we now have a usable backyard! Yay! Ok, THAT was our May!

Now on to our update. I know these kiddos change every month, but for some reason she really grew up this past month and is no longer a baby, but a little girl.

She has started standing up (on everything she can!) and has even begun walking alongside furniture like her crib, the coffee table, chairs, etc. Her balance is getting better every day so it’s only a matter of time before she’s off running. Her main mode of transportation is still the butt scoot. The only thing that really scares me at this moment is that she has already succeeded in climbing a stair and getting to the gate on our staircase. Because of how our staircase is the baby gate is at the back of the second stair up so she likes to climb on the first step and grab onto the gate. It scares me as I don’t want her to fall backwards. She’s slowing learning to back-up slowly and carefully.

She still only has one lonely, very sharp tooth, but that does not stop her from eating finger foods. In fact, she puts up a pretty good fight anytime we try to feed her purees so we’ve started to exclusively give her finger foods at meals. Of course I have a lot of purees still frozen that I’ll be sending to daycare, but I probably won’t be making much more in the food processor. She loves everything – vegetables, fruit, meats, sauces, etc. The only thing she is not a fan of is bananas (the easiest food to feed of course!). But otherwise she shovels everything in and loves it. She is still breastfed, so she gets that 5 times a day and then three table meals and snacks.

Another milestone she’s hit is pointing. She now points at what she wants, especially food.

She loves to talk and babble. She talks a lot more and is becoming more expressive.

She also enjoys tackling things, mainly mommy, daddy and the dogs. She will lift up and throw all her weight forward onto us or a pillow. She has no fear!

Charlotte Mae – Ten Months

Likes: She loves water – so bath time is a favorite of hers. The dogs (and their feet), food (finger foods, not purees), watching people, especially children, she absolutely LOVES peek-a-boo and will giggle a lot when playing, walking along furniture, standing, the outdoors, her magnet board, stuffed animals, balls, climbing, figuring things out, putting things in and taking them out, hugs.

Dislikes: Getting her diaper changed, changing her clothes, being left alone, having her nose wiped, having lotion put on her face. She definitely has some separation anxiety, but if you distract her it doesn’t last long.

Clothes: Mostly 9 – 12 month clothing.

Looking Forward To: We’re going to take a family vacation up to the cabin for the 4th of July and I am so excited to take her up there to experience the lake, swimming (or floating in her case), boat rides and lots of relaxation and the great outdoors.

 

And a little recap. It’s amazing to see her changes in the pictures!