Back in July of 2011 when we took Jack to the ER for the first time for his breathing, we learned that his tonsils are quite large and block his airway, but we were told to keep an eye on it over the next few years because he’d likely need a tonsillectomy some time in the future.
Well, the future is tomorrow.
Last month, Jack had a cold for about 3 weeks and had the hardest time breathing. His doctor couldn’t figure out why he wasn’t getting over it, but after peeking at his tonsils, she sent us to an ENT.
The ENT barely entered the room and already knew Jack had some problems upon hearing his Darth Vader breathing. After examining him and asking some questions about his sleep patterns, he was diagnosed with sleep apnea.
The reason for his snoring, chewing with his mouth open, keeping his mouth open all the time, and slow recovery from viruses all stem from his enlarged tonsils and adenoids, so it’s time for them to go. The doctor suggested we not wait until Summer and this was the earliest we could do to get past his birthday, etc.
We’ve been talking to Jack cautiously about what to expect. There have been some tears this week as the fear has settled in, and not just from him! I know it’s such a common surgery and and most people have them removed at his age, but the thought of him going back tomorrow by himself and being put to sleep to have doctors cut on him makes me want to throw up.
After the hospital called today to confirm his appointment time and go over the procedure with me, I lost it. I know it’ll be just a memory this time next week, but we still have to get there.
Jack has to miss a full week of school and stay away from all physical activity for two weeks. (An elevated heart rate can lead to more bleeding.) I’m sure the first week will be fine, but sitting out from PE and recess everyday for a week after he goes back seems like the worst punishment for this 6 year old.
I’ve been slowly collecting little things to give Jack throughout the first week to help keep him occupied. He’ll get the pajamas tonight to wear to and from the hospital tomorrow.
Our freezer is jam packed with every kind of Popsicle and cold treat you can think of; at least ten movies have been checked out from the library; we’ve borrowed a Wii from my in-laws. Jack has requested orange chicken for his last big meal. So, we’re basically all prepped.
Just time to get this over with and move on. And as with most posts, I’m not sure how to end this one, sooo….
It’s birthday time again for our Jack Ryan.
In the past, you guys know I tend to get emotional during this time, but I’m really trying hard not to look at too many baby Jack videos or photos. I just want to celebrate who he is right now and how much I love what he contributes to our family unit.
A few weeks ago, we went to a birthday party at a gymnastics place and Jack hasn’t stopped talking about having his party there ever since. This was the first year that Jack actually had a say in what he wanted to do for his party and who he wanted to invite.
And the fact that he wanted to have a party and invite everyone from his class is a huge deal.
The party almost didn’t happen because Jack’s allergies had been so bad the week leading up to it, but he was finally able to get a few meds that helped him.
There was a lot of collaboration on the decorations. My mom made the cake, which was intense since it was 6 layers and travelled five hours to get here. Oh, and it was rainbow, per Jack’s request. This kid loves all things rainbow and gold and sparkly.
Reid’s mom asked Target for the cardboard props, which added to the theme since Big Hero 6 stuff is really hard to find!
The great thing about this place is that all we had to do was set everything up; there were two girls working there who facilitated all the play time. The kids had about an hour of different activities.
The lighting in there was dim, so most of my pictures are blurry. Also, Reid was taking video, so I didn’t worry too much about pictures.
And if I’m really honest, Jack wasn’t in the best of moods the entire time. I won’t go into detail, for his sake, but we let the grumpiness slide a little because he was extremely medicated (like 3 different types of medicines) and hadn’t eaten anything because he was so excited earlier, so yeah.
Looking back, Reid and I really wondered if the party was even worth it and if he had even had a good time, BUT Reid made this video from all the footage he shot and it’s so sweet and made me think it was worth it.
Just as long as he knows it’ll be a Wal-Mart cake and a family party next year, ha!
Here’s the video, if you’re interested.
Reid went to the beach during the first week. Jack slept in our bed while he was gone.
At the end of that week, Jack and I went to visit my parents.
Jack hated coloring the first 3.5 years of his life, but he’s making up for it now.
It was a little cold, but it didn’t stop us from swimming in my parents’ new pool.
And the best shot of my brother.
Reid joined us for a little bit while we were there for pottery painting.
Everyone looks so sad painting pottery.
Lauren turned 16 this month, by the way.
I went with my Dad and Lauren to Yom Kipper that Friday night.
Drawing in my mom’s studio.
I got to see one of my oldest friends, Whitney, and finally meet her little boy, Ephraim. She was visiting at her parents house, so I met her over there and hung out with her family, which was very much like our high school days.
Jack went on his first legit field trip, riding the school bus and everything.
While we’re being random, I found a new lake behind our neighborhood while taking a walk.
Jack has declared that he wants to be a teacher when he grows us. He is determined about this.
We went to a few fall festivals.
I think everyone at Target takes this picture, but still.
Reid and Jack worked in the yard.
I visited Jack’s PE class.
I, also, went to the fun run at Jack’s school. Jack fell and couldn’t recover and cried most of the time, but in his defense, he has my genes, so I totally get it.
I took his for frozen yogurt after school that day to celebrate a great first report card.
We went to another fall festival.
And since I’m not in many of these, I’ll show you what it looks like when I try on Jack’s paint for his costume.
We had friends over and this is a favorite picture of the night. That would be sweet Lily Kate in the back with a (toy) gun.
I went the beach, but not many pictures from that weekend.
This was after I got back after another fall festival.
and those are the highlights from last month, in pictures. Minus Halloween pics.
We toss around ideas throughout the year for Halloween costumes. It’s almost in the same way that we toss around names that’d be perfect for a cat if something were to ever happen to Chewie. (Don’t die, Chewie!)
At one point, Jack and I were going to be evil minions and Reid was going to be Gru from Despicable Me, but once Jack got into Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, there was no looking back.
I went to the beach last weekend, but rushed to make sure Jack’s costume was ready before I left so he and Reid could go to a fall festival Saturday morning and then, trunk or treat Sunday night when I got home.
Jack’s costume came together much easier than I ever expected. I was kind of dreading it, but Reid reminded me that if he could make that robot costume and I could make the Prince Charming costume, that we could do this.
Regardless, it was totally worth it! I can’t get enough of him in this costume!
Jack and Reid were really popular at the festival and the trunk or treat; lots of people asked to take their picture, ha!
Before I continue, let’s all applaud this Sharknado costume.
Ok, back to Jack’s costume.
I’ve looked up countless Oompa Loompa costumes and always appreciate when others explain how they made theirs, so I wanted to make sure to include how we did ours.
The wig was ordered online. The shirt is a turtleneck from Wal-mart with ribbon attached to the neck and wrists via double sided tape, which has held up extremely well. The socks are just brown socks were done the same way, but, it hasn’t held up and need something else. Most people either attach felt or paint the stripes.
After buying the fabric to sew pants by making my own pattern, I found these large white sweatpants from Academy. I cut the pant legs off and hemmed them with hot glue (my sewing machine quit!) and glued the bottom edge to make it tighter around his leg. I made the suspenders from plain white fabric and glued buttons on from Hobby Lobby.
The pants puff out of the sides because Reid rolled up socks to put in his pockets. The balls on his shoes are Styrofoam with paint. Sounds like a lot, but it’s really not.
I have orange paint for Jack’s face, but he only wanted the white eyebrows, which turned out fine.
Reid’s vest was a crazy lucky find from the thrift store. He spray painted and added ribbon to a black hat found at a costume store.
I have a red dress to use as my base for my Veruca Salt costume, but I’m not sure if I’ll go through with it or not.
And because I love a flashback collage, here are Jack’s costumes from years past.
]Since school has started, Jack has become my shadow on the weekends. He still likes Reid and wants to hang out with him, of course, but he’d much rather be all up in my business and have all my attention
If I’m really honest, it annoyed me, at first. And I still fight being annoyed, which means I’m incredibly selfish and not realizing that he misses me and just wants to be with me. I keep reminding myself that one day he won’t think I’m so cool anymore and won’t want my attention.
And, really, what more important thing could I be doing?
Typing that all out just makes me look like a jerk. I really do love my kid, I promise!
All that to say, on one particular such Saturday, I decided we needed to get out of the house and do something together, indoors, preferably. So, we went to paint pottery together for the first time.
But, first, we stopped for coffee and a smoothie.
We spent a long time looking around, checking out our options based on our budget. Jack was so set on painting a mummy and tea cup. I picked up a condiment bowl for me, but he ended up painting it for me since I couldn’t come up with ideas.
He painted everything himself, then I went over everything with several coats. He kept telling me over and over how much fun he was having.
I think we were there for almost two hours. It was so relaxing and fun to sit and chat while we painted. It was definitely one of the best dates we’ve had together.
If money wasn’t an issue, I think we’d go back every weekend. Even with this weekend coming up, Reid’s going to be gone all day to the Alabama game, so I keep fighting the urge to go back. Instead, though, I think we’re going to paint pumpkins and do some crafts at home.
Today marks Jack’s fourth day of school and I’m still adjusting. I feel this rush to get so many things done while he’s at school, but I have to remember that this is every single day; I have many days to work on things.
Jack started acting sick last Saturday afternoon, but it seemed like more of an allergic reaction than anything else, but he woke up worse on Sunday morning, so I took him to a doc in the box to find he had a sinus infection. Whatever they gave him knocked it right now. He was better by Monday morning and able to go to school.
Jack was sad because he didn’t think he’d be able to go to school. He was, also, sad on Sunday morning because he thought he got to go to school that day!
I really am so proud of how well he’s done at carpool. Considering there were days at preschool that teachers had to literally pull him out of the car with him crying, I know when I see him walking into the building all by himself that he’s come a long way and he must really like school.
We’ve figured out that our sweet spot for carpool in the morning is leaving at exactly 7:05. Every morning, the teachers working the carpool lines laugh at Jack because he takes his sweet time walking down the line to the cross walk. He blames his heavy tote bag, but I know he’s just on Jack time.
The best part of my day is picking Jack up from school and hearing him talk non-stop about his day.
Last Friday night, Jack wanted to sleep in our bed since it was storming, so I laid down with him and we chatted for a long time about school and he noticed Reid’s Harry Potter book. Reid reads the Harry Potter series about every two years. Jack asked me to read it to him, so we started it and only got a couple of pages in. Jack was laughing at a lot of it, but I thought maybe we should save Harry Potter for later down the road.
I picked up Charlie and the Chocolate Factory yesterday and we started reading it last night. Eventually, his homework at school will be us reading together for 20 minutes a night, so I thought this would be a good start.
So, back to getting things done while Jack’s at school. As Jack’s outgrown toys and clothes, we saved everything and moved it to the attic. It was our safety in case we had another little person. I always thought that I’d eventually consign everything when Jack started school in the distant, distant future. That it was my problem for another day. And that day is here.
Reid helped me get everything down last night. We’ve already sold the bigger items, like the swing, jumper, bouncy seat, etc. As I started going through it last night, I realized it’s a lot more intense and overwhelming than I initially thought. It’s a TON of stuff to go through. Like two bins of just teeny tiny 0-6 months pajamas.
My goal is to put all the fall clothing items in a consignment sale next month and organize what needs to be saved for the Spring sale and donate everything else.
I know I’ll feel good when it’s all done, but that may be a month of working through all this mess. Sweet mercy. I’m already having to remind myself to pace myself and that I have plenty of time to work on this.
And there’s a few days worth of blog posts all in one.
I didn’t sleep well last night, anticipating the morning ahead. I was awake by 6 on my own and peeked in on Jack and he was awake, too. I let him get up to watch TV and rest a little before the day really started.
We were so early in getting ready and taking pictures that we just sat in the car for a few minutes before leaving. I’m sure that will NEVER happen again in his schooling career.
For some reason, the school requires all kindergartener to carry a tote bag purchased from the school. It’s the size of a duffle bag. What in the world.
Jack had no anxiety this morning and was ready to get to school. While driving to school, I started crying, so I grabbed some sunglasses and tried my best to hide it.
We were so early that carpool hadn’t started yet, but everyone was lining up, so I grabbed a place as close to the school as I could get and we waited.
Jack gave me a hug and a kiss without any prompting while we were waiting. And, then it happened. At exactly 7:15, they said, “Ok, everyone out!” And all these car doors fly open and kids are jumping out everywhere.
And, then, there’s poor Jack. He had a hard time getting the car door open. Then trying to grab his full-size luggage bag and lunchbox and my yelling, “close the door!”
I watched him walk in as I drove by slowly. And the tears started flowing again.
I met up with Samantha later in the morning for coffee and sharing our first day experiences since Noah started today, too, and may have worn an outfit that coordinated with Jack’s outfit.
I spent most of the day between being teary and being kind of excited about the time to myself. I got a lot of work done and before I knew it, it was time to get Jack.
Carpool was a bit chaotic, but that’s to be expected and should get better. His teacher helped him get in the car and said it was a great day and that he had a lot of fun.
Jack chatted the whole way home and through some round about ways that don’t need to be mentioned, we eventually learned that he did have a great day and can’t wait to go back tomorrow. SUCH great news!