My brother and his wife had a beautiful daughter named Tavia, and Sierra was so excited to go with me to meet her! Darling little thing with lots of dark hair. Sierra's swimming class ended, it was only four weeks but she really enjoyed it. Carter had his sleep safe bed extended for safety, because he's getting so tall. With the mattress on its lowest setting and the side up, he was getting close to being able to fall out. We're thankful for insurance and National Seating & Mobility for helping us out. Keaton had his ear tubes put in; we had to be there really early. He wasn't too happy when he woke up, but it was a quick procedure. He had an ear infection in his left ear that they cleared out and fluid. The funny thing is, he hasn't acted different like he hears any better. His post op appointment and hearing test is beginning of June, so hopefully it will show he's hearing well. Keaton started OT with a great therapist that comes to our home and speech therapy. Combine that with his feeding therapy and developmental specialist, and I'm feeling a bit overwhelmed with appointments and to-do activities. We tried a bunch of water beads for sensory play and he loved it! Problem is, they ended up everywhere!
Keaton is pretty delayed in most areas of development, which is concerning to me especially as the mother. While I feel like I'm doing everything I can and should, I don't feel up to the task. And it feels a lot like deja vu. I've done a lot of this before with Carter, but it's different this time. We don't know why Keaton is delayed or if he'll just catch up and be fine. I admit to giving in to feelings of feeling bad for him and myself and wondering why I have to go through this again. Wondering what I did wrong and getting tired of peoples' stares and questions. He'll be 2 in 2 months and all he says is 'uh oh' and still walks slow and slightly spread out. I turned in paperwork for Keaton to have a developmental assessment at the Children with Special Needs Clinic; they said he should be seen by August. In the meantime, he is doing some good things. He is using his teeth/jaws more when chewing food and playing with food and trying new things. He is really good with a ball and likes walking on different kinds of terrain. He is sleeping better at night (knock on wood) and napping well. He is attending to tasks more and paying attention. I sure love his huge smiles and cuddles. No matter what, I love that little boy fiercely.
Miss Sierra celebrated her 4th birthday! It seemed to last an entire week because her birthday was on a Monday. I was a mean mom and took her to the pediatrician (3 shots ouch!) 50% weight and 80% height, then had cake/presents, and Daddy took her to Layton's Surf n' Swim to ride the waves on tubes. The next day, she went to Grandma Devey's for a sleepover. They went to the mall and she went to Build a Bear where she made a pony named Brownie. I was surprised at her choice but thought it was cute. She had such a fun time playing with her Grandma and cousins! Thursday she took cupcakes to her preschool class where they sang to her, and then Friday was her birthday party. We had a tea party with dolls at Gardner Village's Georgell Doll Shop. We had a room reserved just for us (so cute!) and just her girl cousins were invited. They had 'tea' (strawberry lemonade), sandwiches and cupcakes. We played Tea Bingo, pin the teacup on the doily, took pictures and opened presents. The girls were fascinated with pouring their 'tea' and walking around the shop and outside. It was the cutest and most feminine party, perfect for my princess!
Sierra had her last day of preschool and is still doing speech therapy. She has articulation issues and perhaps more, we're not sure yet. I haven't liked her first two therapists, so we're waiting to see another one at Primary's outpatient clinic. She's such a big helper and a great sister to her brothers. She loves to pretend play with dolls, ponies, anything! We visited Wheeler Farm one evening and got some cute pictures of the kids. They loved riding the wagon. She mostly says "play with me!" and "You're my best friend".
Mother's Day was a quiet affair- I slept in a little and Chris made me breakfast and gave me a card with gift card. We had church where the Primary kids sang (Sierra loved being up on the stand), and then dinner at Chris's mom's house. I had brunch the Friday before with my mother in law, her mom, and my two sisters in law (the younger 2 were at school). Keaton's physical therapist told me about a gym that might be fun for him while also working on his development, so we decided to go and try it out. It's called Lil' Flippers Gymnastics & Gym. They have a mom/kid class for the littles and then Sierra joined the older group. Keaton wasn't able to do a lot of what they do, but perhaps with time he will. They did a few courses with trampolines, slides, crawling on ladders and through tunnels etc. Sierra loved her class; we'll have to go a few more times! We got our family passes to the zoo (thank you Angel Hands Foundation) and to the Tree house Museum in Ogden (thank you Head Start). We tried it out last month with some cousins, it was pretty cool. Carter is still enjoying his horse therapy every week. He has just a few more weeks of Kindergarten, then it's summertime. Oy. I'm planning on doing some outpatient PT to keep working on his skills during the summer. The last few movies we've seen were Batman vs. Superman and Captain America Civil War. I have some great books on my nightstand (when I have the time to read).
Carter's been having some crying spells at school and home, and we haven't quite figured out why. He's also been waking up some at night crying and waking up Sierra. We have been trying some Clonidine in the mornings and feeding him a little more often to figure it out. We saw Dr. Murphy today and Carter is probably really hungry- he was only in the 20s for weight and in the 60s for height. We are increasing his food to help him gain weight, and perhaps that will help with his crying spells. She also suggested when we get a new wheelchair this summer (he's had his for 4 years), that we could try one with big wheels to see if Carter could help propel himself. Cool idea. The social worker came in to give us some ideas on summer activities, although it's pretty hard with just me and the three kids going out. Carter failed a hearing test at school, and USDB didn't have any success at getting results from hearing tests, so we took him to audiology and he still failed the tests and sound booth. So tomorrow he's having a sedated ABR; it's been 4 years so I hope we haven't missed anything. It's really the only way to get full and accurate results.
I don't know if it's summer approaching that has me nervous or what, but I've been really struggling lately with the kids. Between all the doctor/therapy appointments, worrying about Keaton and Carter, and trying to keep the house clean and going and the kids happy and fed...I've been exhausted. Not just physically, but mentally and emotionally. I feel drained, depleted. Even just going to the store by myself, the logistics of it are tricky. Carter has to be lifted and Keaton still clings to me. I have felt like not many can understand my particular situation, and it's isolating. Being farther from family has hit me too, and I feel like my support system is quite small. I have been angry and frustrated, which hasn't made me feel any better. But I decided it's ok to let myself feel like this, because I can't always be happy or content. Motherhood is hard, and I do have some unique situations on my hands. I am overwhelmed and quite busy. It's easy to see my failings and berate myself every night. But I guess the point is, I keep going. I keep trying. And I sure love these kiddos of mine, even though I'm pretty sure I will go crazy any moment now. I don't rely on my Heavenly Father much, because I tell myself I'm strong enough and I've got this. Plus sometimes my bitterness blames Him for my circumstances. But when you see the fabric around you crumbling, it's time to start asking for help. And to humble yourself. Stay tuned, if you dare, for my progress.
What's coming up: Carter's sedated hearing test (tomorrow), weekend trip to St. George, Carter's outpatient PT appointment, Sierra's outpatient speech consultation, SUMMER, Chris's 30th birthday and Father's Day.......