Thursday, July 10, 2008

HaPpY BiRtHdAy Double Shot!!!

Sixteen years ago today Double Shot made his grand entrance! And boy, was it ever a crazy ride! I went into labor when he was only 23 weeks along. The next 13 weeks were spent on bedrest with many trips to the doctor and the hospital. We had to put the girls in daycare and Mr. Macchiato had the burden of working, getting the girls to and from daycare, taking care of all the household duties such as grocery shopping, cleaning and meals. I would try to do things here and there to help him while they were all gone but it usually ended with another trip to the hospital. I often joke that I was in labor for three months because I had to log all of my contractions during that time. Once we reached the 36 week mark I was taken off all medication and assumed we would have him later that day. Nope. Nothing. Not a contraction.

The doctor said I was free to do whatever I liked and some friends came to visit from the east coast. We went to the zoo. Nothing. Not one contraction. We went to the beach. I even went boogie boarding and had a great time until one awesome waved hurled me at lightening speed toward the beach... and I got beached. Like a great white whale. I got out of the water then. Still... nothing. Even though we had used sunscreen, both my husband and myself got severely sunburned. The girls? No. I noticed I was swelling and I checked my blood pressure at a pharmacy... it was a little high. We left the girls with our friends and went up to the hospital. I had had toxemia with my first child and was concerned so we thought I should get checked. My blood pressure was a little elevated but after taking a look at our sunburns the staff decided that was the problem. I was 25 years old but both my husband and I looked younger (him much more so) and the fact that we already had two other children... caused the staff to be less than kind to us. It was quite upsetting. We went home.

Mr. Macchiato stayed home from work to recover from his sunburn and our friends left. I continued to swell at an alarming rate. I called the doctor. The nurse had already heard about our trip to the hospital the night before and her irritation was evident. It upset me so I asked to have the doctor call me. He called. He sighed. He told me I had an appt. the next day. I got off the phone and cried. And I swelled some more.

The next day Mr. Macchiato went to work and then came home early to take me to the doctor. We had decided to keep the girls in daycare until after the baby was born. I could not fit in my shoes. I could not fit in my clothes. I had to wear an enormous night shirt with Snoopy on the front and stretch pants. Mr. Macchiato was mortified. When I got on the scale and saw how much I weighed I started crying. I had gained 19 lbs. since my last visit... 7 days before. The nurse checked my urine and then my blood pressure. She got very serious and checked it several more times. She told me to lay down on my side and to be calm. She even turned off the light. She came back five minutes later and checked my blood pressure again. She left. The doctor came back and checked my blood pressure. He then informed us we had a problem and that I needed to go to the hospital. I asked him if he was going to deliver my baby and he told me that his wife was playing in the orchestra at a function he had to go to and that he was not going to be on call... but, that when the event was over he would come to the hospital to check on me.

After three months of counting contractions... I had to be induced. My doctor did come in that night around 11 pm. He ended up staying through the night. Our son was born at 9:38 am. The chord was wrapped around his neck several times and there was an actual knot in it. My doctor had heard of that happening but had never seen it. It ended up in a pan in the doctor's lounge so others could see it. Double Shot was 23" long and weighed 8 lbs. 11 oz. A couple of hours after his birth, a nurse wheeled a big scale into my room. I had gained another 5 lbs. Leave it to me to give birth to a big ole baby and gain weight while doing it! They were able to get it under control and we went home a couple days later. I also lost 40 lbs. in a matter of days.

Double Shot was... a crabby baby. I think he screamed for three months straight. He'd only tolerate his father for short bits on his lap in the evenings when he came home from work. He seemed to really like only me. It was pretty rough and he had significant health issues. At four months he got his first cold... it led to pnuemonia and then pnuemonia again at six months. He was tested for cystic fibrosis at six months and the 24 hour wait for the results were among the longest hours of my life. It was negative. However, the amount of gunk his lungs produced caused us to have to regularly beat his chest, back and sides to loosen it after giving him breathing treatments. He was not given the official asthma diagnosis until he was 5. Many, many times in his life we have had to set our alarm for the middle of the night to check him and give him breathing treatments. We were blessed with some incredible doctors along the way... one of whom gave us his home phone number and would meet us at his office during off hours.

When Double Shot was 12 we were sent by our specialist in town up to National Jewish Research Hospital in Denver. There were some concerns in regard to some test results. We spent close to a month up there (we went home on the weekends). They took him off of all of his meds and then proceeded to run every test imaginable. It was scary. His lung function went down to 70%. Amazingly, his physical endurance tests put him up in the 90-100% of boys his age... It shocked everyone. Imagine what he could do if he didn't have asthma!!! The specialists there changed up his meds and except for two instances within the first couple of months... he has had no ER visits. We've also gotten through the bad times of year with him without extra meds.

Double Shot is an athlete. He loves sports. Football being number one and all other sports being what you play when you can't play football. In spite of being one of the two smallest kids on the team he has always been a starter. He is now 5'8", 135 lbs. and wears a size 12 shoe. The doctor seems to think he will be over 6 ft. and that he'll be one of those that doesn't stop growing until his early twenties. Who knows? We'll just have to wait and see.

He has been a rough kid to parent. Every. Step. Of. The. Way. He is intense and exhausting. But, he is so worth it. Every minute.

Happy Birthday Double Shot!!!


noble pig said...

Wow, what a must have had a very active baby when he was little to loop that cord into a scary right?

AmusedMomma said...

Happy Birthday Double Shot!

Flea said...

What an incredible story. Happy Birthday! My 14 year old son is in a size 11 shoe. Ugh. When do their feet stop growing?

OKGardners said...

Happy Birthday, Double Shot!
You are an amazing kid. Keep up the good work!

Betty in Oklahoma

Just Me said...

What an amazing story, and what a bunch of stupid ER folks to blow off a preeclamptic mama. It could have led to a very different outcome.

Happy birthday, Double Shot!

FWIW, the kids who give their mamas the most grey hairs are the ones that make you most proud as adults.

Laura ~Peach~ said...

Happy birthday DOuble shot!!!!!!
hugs mom and dad !!!

Brenda said...

Happy Birthday Double Shot!

Deborah said...

What a story!!
Happy birthday Doubleshot!

Elysa said...

We wished him HAPPY BIRTHDAY over at his facebook a/c, but can't pass up a chance to do it again. We sure do love that guy...and over 6 feet, huh? WOW!

Love to you all,

Mabunny said...

Wow. What a pregnancy story.
Glad he came out all well, and you lost 40 lbs!
Nicole had asthma when she was little, got real bad when she was about 2 - she has since out grown it , but still gets all icky/coughy like when september rolls around and allergies kick in.
Lets hope she outgrows it somemore.

thislittlepiggy said...

Happiest of birthday wishes! :o)