Thursday, September 30, 2010

PT/OT/ST...oh my!

Cooper is officially in all three therapy disciplines: physical, speech and occupational. I feel like we're there all the time!

Physical therapy: Cooper is still unable to sit-up, crawl or bear weight on his legs. His PT has said that he is at a 6 month old level. He works so hard during his sessions and at home so I know it's just a matter of time. Every now and then, he'll sit-up unsupported for like 10 seconds and he'll bear some weight on his legs for a brief moment...and, that's progress! He's rolling all over the place now though! He can't crawl but he is mobile! He sees something on the other side of the room and will roll to it! He has the biggest smile on his face when he finally gets there and that smile brings joy to my heart~

Speech therapy: For the record, this has nothing to do with him talking which confuses people. Hypotonia affects EVERY muscle in the body which includes his tongue, his throat muscles and even the muscles around his lips. His tongue is weak which makes it difficult for it to move the food down his throat and more often than not the food pockets in the side of his mouth. He also is unable to use a sippy cup because his mouth can't get around the spout tight enough. It still takes him about 30+ minutes to do a bottle. She's going to teach him how to swallow correctly, move up to finger foods, use a sippy cup and straw...eventually, we'll move up to language and then he'll be able to tell us the meaning of life, you know those sorts of things....

Occupational therapy: Everyone seems to find this one hilarious because Cooper doesn't even have a job...yeah, that joke is getting old! This therapy helps him with his fine motor skills. He had his eval today and she has him at a 7 month old level. His fingers are weak so he uses his palms to pick up things so he needs to work on using his fingers more. He has now started some imitating like clapping when you clap but she wants him to start doing these things on a more consistent basis. She was very impressed with how well he follows commands and how he concentrates on you very hard so you can tell that he's trying to figure out how to do things.

Overall, we've got a lot of work ahead of us but I'm there with him every step of the way. He's an inspiration for me because he has such a sweet spirit despite everything that goes on with therapy. Everyone loves him at the therapy place...who wouldn't, really? ;)

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Savannah take 2

We went on a family vacation with my mom, dad, my siblings and their kids (minus the twins) last weekend to Savannah. We haven't all been on a trip together in years so it was a real joy to be able to hang out together for 3 days in a row. We went to a local cemetery that is so beautiful that they turned it into a park, we went down River Street, Fort Pulaski, Tybee Island, Forsyth Park, another ghost tour, and ate some great food.

The only down side to this trip is that Cooper decided that he hated our hotel room. He would fall asleep for about 2 hours but would wake up crying. The next room tapped on our wall so it was a little nerve wracking. So, he slept on my chest both nights to keep from me having to go to the next room for a come to Jesus meeting. Like really, dude, do you think his crying is music to my ears? Really, how do you keep a baby from crying for the entire night? Now, my mommy heart enjoyed our closeness but my back not so much. Homeboy is a good 22 pounds now and having him on your chest for 8+ hours is hard on the whole 32 year old body.

For those familiar with Savannah, could you please tell me when it's not hotter than sin there? Geez!

Cooper laying his claim to Tybee Island

I can't believe I'm putting a pic of me in my bathing suit on here but I love this one of us together
Cooper with his cousins

Cooper flying through the air at Colonial Park Cemetery

I turn my back for a moment and nana gives him licorice...he only got a few licks in before mommy confiscated the contraband, well, I had to get a picture didn't I? ;)

Monday, September 20, 2010

Here kitty, kitty, kitty...

Oh, sweet Delilah is starting to come around to Cooper which is great since she hates kids (thanks to my neice, Abbi!). She'll come and rub her body against his legs when he's in his exersaucer. She lays down with him on his mat. It really is quite cute!
Then there was yesterday.

I guess we should start teaching him how to give kitty a gentle petting and not so much a full scale attack. Luckily, Delilah is a lover and not a fighter :)

Thursday, September 16, 2010


I seem to be facing a popular misconception when it comes to Cooper's developmental delays. I don't mean this to be b*tchy and this isn't directed at anyone that I know in real life as I seem to face this from everyone, even after I've explained to them that Cooper has hypotonia. I had to explain all of this to the cashier at Kro.ger yesterday in response to the question and her following facial remarks in regards to Cooper not crawling yet. I'm not even per se "venting" because that also has a connotation of negativity. I guess I'm just writing this to get it off my mind.

Cooper isn't just be stubborn. He won't crawl, sit-up, or walk whenever he is "ready". He physically can't do these things. He wants to do these things! I see the frustration in his eyes when he's on his tummy and his legs are trying to push him but his arms aren't strong enough to push his body up. I see the frustration in his eyes when we're working on his sitting up but he folds right over because his trunk isn't strong enough to balance. I see his eyes follow the other babies as they crawl across the room. There isn't anything wrong with his drive to be independent!

This also has NOTHING to do with my patience! I'm not in a hurry to have a crawler because of a "ME" thing! I don't want him to sit-up on his own because it's a "ME" thing! I want him to be able to do the same things as the other babies his age not because it's a "ME" thing! I want him to have the same opportunities to play at Kanga.zoom so that he can have fun being a baby not because it's a "ME" thing. So, all the advice of "just be patient" is actually starting to grate my nerves.

Hmmm, okay, maybe this is turning into a vent! Please, understand through my smile when you ask me if my son is crawling yet is a mother that worries constantly about making sure that he has the same opportunities and experiences the same joy as all of the other babies.

I wish I had a crystal ball so that I could just see into the future for just 5 seconds...

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Formula Powered!

To new readers: I am very pro-breastfeeding. Please, refer to this post so that you understand that I am 100% breast is best! I have no guilt associated with my son receiving formula as I had no other reasonable option...proceeding with post now...

I found the funniest shirt at Old Na.vy the other day and was propelled to buy it (oh, and the fact that I had a 30% off coupon didn't hurt, either!). It may just be my warped sense of humor but I find this shirt to be a riot! My son also has no reason to feel bad for receiving formula so we're going to kick it, old school like in our formula shirt...hmmm, maybe I'll make a shirt that says "formula isn't rat poison" and wear it on the same day ;) Joking!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Thanks, Bree!

My friend, fellow blogger and baby loss momma, Bree, made this hat for Cooper last year! I'll keep this little hat forever and I can't believe his head used to be this small!

We received this adorable little hat in the mail yesterday from none other than Bree the knitting extraordinaire! As you can see, he looks ADORABLE in it and I know that he will be wearing it a lot come this fall and winter! Thanks, Bree! Cooper loves you (and, you know I do, too!)!

Monday, September 13, 2010

My baby and the zoo's new baby!

We're going to put our annual zoo passes to good use now that the weather is getting a bit more hospitable. We went to meet our zoo's new baby girafee, Zuri! We had a great time today and I'm looking forward to many more trips!

Is this not the most perfect zoo outfit!?!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Rookie mistake!

I went (and still do at times) crazy with baby clothes for Cooper. I would change him into a new outfit every time he spit-up on it, even if we weren't leaving the house, in the early, the outfit change criteria is that there must be poop or pee on it because that's how mommy rolls now :) Although, he's pretty immaculate when we leave the house so the poop/pee rule doesn't apply then!
We're having our annual yard sale tomorrow and I've been organizing Cooper's old clothes by size and you know, I got a little teary eyed...geez, they really do grow-up fast, don't they :( I still have to get the 9 month clothes out of his closet and the 9 month sleepers out of his dresser drawers so these pictures aren't even a true picture of my craziness!
This yardsale has been strategically scheduled for this weekend because I need to finance Cooper's first birthday party...Oy vey! I just don't know how to do anything on a small scale!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Prayers for a preemie

My sister-in-law's sister had a baby at 29 weeks last night. Baby Brycen weighs 1 lb 12 oz and is 13 inches long so he's very tiny! Currently, he is on a vent but they hope to wean him off it tonight. Please, join me in prayer for this tiny one that he receives the best care possible and that his little body gets stronger with each day.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Homemade baby food

I had a revelation two weekends ago in relation to Cooper's baby food...we've been having problems with constipation and other times, I couldn't get him to stop going, like literally, he would go 8 times a exagerations! We've also had a battle with a diaper rash around his little bum hole (sorry, TMI!) which is caused by too high of a ph balance. I talked with his ped at his 9 month wellness check about all of this and asked if she thought that making his baby food would help...she said no and that there wasn't a difference...

I took this answer and ran with it, plus who has time to make babyfood when you're doing physical therapy, MOPS, Mom's club and nap schedules, etc? Then, I said to myself "well, how many times do you get on facebook or your blog everyday?" Yeah, I have time...

We went to the farmer's market and loaded up on fresh veggies and fruits. My MIL bought us a cool food processor and I got to work! So far, we've made squash, sweet potatoes, green beans, spinach, pears, peaches, and chicken. He LOVES his yummy, homemade food and eats every morsel!

Also, all of his intestinal problems are solved! He hasn't had a rash since going to the homemade baby food which is a huge relief for me! I know that diaper rashes aren't a sign of neglect and almost every baby will have one but I just felt like CRAP when he would have one! He's much happier, too! His fourth tooth has come in so it won't be much longer until he's eating food off my plate :)

The fruits of our labors! Cooper now has his very own shelf in the freezer!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Cooper's first UGA football season opener!

Cooper was decked out in his UGA gear for the first game of the season yesterday! We've been practicing our "GO DAWGS, SIC EM!" and he's super pumped to be a Dawgs fan! We'll never know if Cooper's mere presence on the earth spurred the Dawgs to a great opening game but we did win 55 to 7 yesterday....hmmm, makes you think, doesn't it?

Saturday, September 4, 2010

MRI Update

Imagine my surprise when I received a phone call from Cooper's neurologist yesterday afternoon with the MRI results! Now, that is service!

He first called and left a message on my cell (I'm notorious for not having it handy because it's normally in the bottom of my diaper bag!) and the voicemail message ended while he was talking! I tried to call him back (literally, within 5 minutes after he left the message) and the office was closed. An hour later the house phone rang and I answered in a sexy voice thinking it was my husband to say he was on his way home and to my shock and embarrasment it was the neurologist!

The MRI shows that there is nothing wrong structurally with Cooper's brain but he does have extra axial fluid around his brain. So, the plan is to have his head measured every month to see if the fluid is increasing. He did say that the fluid does normally reabsorb into the brain between 12-15 months but that if it doesn't than we will have to discuss a shunt at that point. I can't even allow myself to think in that direction so I'm staying on the side of positivity and that this fluid issue will resolve on it's own.

So, we're getting some answers as to why Cooper is having some developmental delays which is better than where we were when I woke up yesterday!

Friday, September 3, 2010

MRI take #2

Cooper is taking a nap right now so I thought I would update all of you on how Cooper's MRI went this morning!

I can't tell you how different the experience was today versus the last fiasco! His MRI was scheduled for 8 AM this morning which was great because he didn't have to go for hours and hours like last time without any food. I don't know if this is good or bad but I did feed him last night at 1:30 AM so that maybe going without his wake-up bottle wouldn't be as rough. I also gave him so pedia.lyte for some extra hydration at 5:30. We got there and I didn't even have to mention the IV team needing to the IV which took a load off my shoulders! I was ready to go to bat if anyone other than the IV team came anywhere near him! They prepared his arms and legs with these little heating pads to get the veins ready and they even brought the U/S machine with them! They were so prepared and got the IV in on the first try! They took us back for the MRI within 10 minutes after putting in the IV which was great because you know Cooper was obsessed with the IV stuff in his arm! They used Propofol to sedate him, you know the same stuff Michael Jackson was on, and he was out like a lightbulb in 3 seconds flat! It was a little creepy because one second he was whining and the next second he was like a limp noodle! It was hard to see to be completely honest but I had prayed REALLY hard all morning and had to just put the anxiety into God's hands and leave it there! They brought him back to the room on a stretcher and he was pretty out of it for about 10 minutes and then he gave us that million dollar smile and I knew that we had all survived!

Now, it's a waiting game! If this yields no answers than (most likely) they will just diagnosis him with benign congenital Hypotonia which means that he will EVENTUALLY walk but he won't be on the football team or track team which is okay by me! Hey, maybe he'll be a golf pro OR maybe he won't be into sports at all! Whatever, as long as he's happy and whatever he does will make me happy...

Thursday, September 2, 2010

10 months!

Dear Coopie,

You have become quite the character as of late! You like to do acrobatics while I'm trying to change your diaper which has left mommy's hands with poo on them more times than I care to think about! You have 3 teeth now and are working on 2 more! You had your first teething biscuit and some puffs today! I may have to watch how many puffs you partake in though as you are 21+ pounds now...just joking! You love sleeping on your side like a grown person now...and, I don't even know why I have the video monitor anymore because you always end up at the bottom of the crib every night!

Your shirt says "mommy's best friend" and I hope that one day when you're older and able to say for yourself that you really will say I am your best friend...

I love you forever,

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Separation Anxiety

We've missed church for about a month now because Cooper couldn't handle the nursery...God love him and all his sweetness but he just can't handle it right now. Today was our first MOPS meeting and I though "Eh, let's give it a try..." and I really was hopeful for a positive experience today. Not so much. They had a window that I could peek in and I was pleasantly surprised the first time that I stole a peek that he was doing great! I came back 10 minutes later and his world had fallen apart evidently. The sweet lady's exact words were "is this one yours?" and said that he had been inconsolable for 10 minutes. I told her to possibly try giving him his bottle because he was just about due and that I would come back in 10 minutes to see how he was doing...yeah, came back in my little man was still in hysterics! I ended up spending most of the meeting on the breastfeeding couch and luckily he fell asleep in my arms...

I'm just so torn because I don't want to force him to "get over" what he's feeling but am I making it worse by always rescuing him and not giving him the opportunity to assimilate with the other babies? I honestly CANNOT relax if I know that he is unhappy!

I was really looking forward to joining MOPS but I wonder if I should put it off for a few months to give him an opportunity to get past this OR do I keep taking him with the hopes that he'll get used to it...I did the same thing with the church nursery and hello, we haven't been to church in weeks because he just has a meltdown...the mommy part of you loves that he needs you so much but then the mommy part of you that was really looking forward to a couple of hours every other week of woman time is, not frustrated because that's too harsh of a word, maybe just at a loss as what to do...

Ultimately, I know that I can only do what I'm comfortable with but how have you handled this situation with your own babies?