Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Kaitlyn's first day of school!

Wow, what a day! talk about tears. Today was Kaitlyn's first day of Preschool. She will likely be one of the youngest ones in the class, it's for 3 years olds, and Kaitlyn will be 3 next month (but of course developmentally, she's still more like a 2.5 year old). We'll see how it goes for this month. Kaitlyn will be evaluated for special school in a few weeks and she'll likely qualify. We may do a combination of both, we'll see.

As I stood back and watched Kaitlyn jump right into drawing, the tears started rolling (of course, did you expect anything different?) All I could think of was joy and sadness at the same time. Joy: thinking of how far my little darling has come from lying in an isolette, weighing just a mere 1.5 pounds. Now she's going to school without her mommy! And sadness: sadness for missing Corinne that should be right there by her side. It was quite an emotional moment for mom, that's for sure.

Kaitlyn didn't show much separation anxiety with my leaving, I told her I was going to be leaving, and she said "ok". But when I came to pick her up afterwards (it's a 2 1/2 hour program, very small class size) she was showing signs of separation anxiety. It was sort of cute. She loves her mom and does miss me! After going home, boy, did she fall asleep easily for nap time.

A mom I had just met at the meet and greet last week gave me a big hug as I was tearing up, her daughter is in class with Kaitlyn and her younger son has a lot of disabilities, so I think she really understood how proud I was that Kaitlyn was in mainstream school as well as being sad over missing Corinne. Thank you Jennifer for the hug!

Kaitlyn drawing at school (yes she's drawing on the pen cap). She hyper focuses on things all the time.

Mom and Kaitlyn having walked to school from our house, Kaitlyn just said to me: "hold my hand"
Kaitlyn with her lunch box and backpack, very excited!
Mom and Kaitlyn in the classroom
One of Kaitlyn's teachers, Meggan

Kaitlyn & Feeding:
We've had some backwards development. Her weight started dropping and we started getting more worried about the calories we are getting in her (like old times). She has started misbehaving, refusing food, batting us away and basically making meal-times very unpleasant again. We've also had some vomits again (however, the vomits we had were due to her not-chewing as opposed to being full, she still swallows things whole when she needs to chew them (even though she can chew) I think she gets lazy. But I do attribute some of the behavior (in general, not just around feeding) from her little brother. I think it's setting in that the little fella is here to stay and she's not super happy about it. As well as our worrying more about the calories and her weight. Grrrr. it's so frustrating. Id love to be one of the those parents for when their child doesn't eat that I can just say, ok, who cares, she'll eat more next time. Maybe some day?
More updates:
Brian went back to work today, so this afternoon and tonight will be my first day on my own. Saturday, 26 hours I'll be totally on my own...uggghh..I'm a bit nervous actually. Trying to pump, feed Kaitlyn and bottle feed a crying Quinn at the same time is going to be crazy. Oh and work too! Oh well, I'm sure I'll figure it out. Not sure how long I'll be able to keep up the pumping this time around. I've got a little stash stored up at least, and hope to try to pump for at least another 3 months, but we'll see!

I still freak out all the time that Kaitlyn really has a lot of developmental disabilities. She is always so much more interested in things than in people. She is so hyperactive in busy environments. Her NICU 3 year follow-up is in a few weeks, it will be interesting to see what they say. But how much can they evaluate in a few hours?


I think the little fella might be refluxing a bit. We've had quite a few marathon feeding sessions (or maybe this is normal, I have no idea) which usually happen at night (not fun) where he cries, wants the bottle, drinks, falls asleep, you put him down (on an angle of course) he fusses more, but won't take the bottle, until maybe 10 minutes later, then drinks some, and does the same thing all over again. I can get big burps out of him (that helps), but is this normal, I have no idea???

He also is still anemic (have to have another blood draw this week) so maybe that's where the tiredness is coming from, he has a horrible case of baby acne (poor little fella) and one of his tear ducts is a bit blocked (all normal baby stuff, really). All-in-all, he's really doing quite well, is growing and we are more in love with him every day!

Super Busy:

Brian's dad Edward (Quinn's middle name) was here for a week and just left on Sunday. He was wonderful and helped a lot with the kids, especially for the early morning Quinn feeds (we are NOT morning people). My dad and stop-mom had also visited last week and my mom was here for 4 days not long after Quinn came home. While Ed was here we went to the Zoo, (to try to cool down in SF with a heat wave going on at our house, which I think is adding to Quinn's baby acne), Train Town and a haircut. With all those house-guests, it's been a bit crazy around here and I'm sooo behind on everything, announcements and especially hand written thank you notes for all the wonderful presents for Quinn we've received! I promise they are coming!

Kaitlyn's 2nd haircut, no tears this time. she "wanted" to go!

Ed, Kaitlyn and Dad at Train Town

A fellow Micro preemie and surviving twin, Sam, and Kaitlyn
One of the best things about the support groups I run is getting to meet moms that I know "on-line" in person. Amy Collen (above left), her husband John and Sam, (a 24 weeker surviving twin) belongs to both my local preemie support group as well as my Micro Preemie Support Group (global). It was so nice to meet Amy and Sam in person, they came to visit us and brought us some yummy cookies!
The McCarthy family taking a break from the heat at Train Town in Sonoma County. Going out in public! We couldn't do any of this with Kaitlyn after she came home . This is such a different experience this time around, it's amazing to me. I don't have a feeding pump, syringes and have to worry about vomit at any time. Wow! I had this baby carrier with Kaitlyn but was never able to use it, as it was too hard with all of her feeding supplies. I feel like a real mom this time around!

Brian and Liz celebrating their 4th wedding anniversary at Forbes Island. A cool restaurant in SF. This picture was taken from the light-house. You have to take a boat to get to this restaurant and can go up to the light house to watch the sun-set. It was over 100 degrees at our house when we left (only 26 minutes from SF) and it was so chilly I had to borrow Brian's jacket due to the wind in this picture! You can see the Golden Gate Bridge in the background We haven't been out to dinner for ...well, I don't know when it was last. We were able to get out twice this week (for my birthday and for our anniversary) as Brian's dad was in town. It really makes us miss the fact that we don't have any local family.
A better sunset picture of the bridge in the background.
Brian and Liz, alone at last! After almost 2 months on bedrest, 2 weeks in the hosptial, it's good to be "free" again!
Dad and Kaitlyn pointing out giraffes at the zoo
Ed and Kaitlyn at the zoo.


Kristin said...

WOW K at school?! Wonderful! Love the pics too.. So glad you have had some "normal" baby experiences Liz :-) Wonderful when family comes too.

Anonymous said...

I have a daughter very similar to Kaitlyn the way you always describe.
Could you tell what kind of school is that? Is this a public school or private? Can you tell the name of the school and tell us about how did you find out and who helped you about this school and what are the enrollment requirements?
We are glad that everything is going good with your daughter and son.Please update us with the information.

liz.mccarthy said...

Anonymous- I don't understand what you are asking...

The school my daughter is going to is a regular preschool. Not a special school. She will be reviewed as to her ability to also attend special school (through my local public school district). But that won't start until she is 3 years old and finished with therapies that the Regional Center is currently covering (Early Intervention). Once she is 3 Regional Center goes away and our local school district takes over.

I choose the preschool to enroll my daughter in due to these reasons:

1. Very small class size (10 or 11 students to 2 teachers and an aid).
2. Walking distance to my house
3. Great reputation
4. Happens to be the least expensive preschool around
5. Don't require children to be potty trained.

Anonymous said...

It is so great to see Kaitlyn in school! It will be interesting to see if this improves her eye contact and social interactions. It really seems that she may fall on the autism spectrum somewhere. I apologize if I'm overstepping here and I'm not trying to upset anyone. Its just an observation.

Amy said...

Seeing K at school brought tears to my eyes, so I can just imagine the emotions you must have felt, Liz. I love seeing the four of you together as a family and am so happy you are getting to experience the "normal" side of motherhood. We were cooped up for the first six months b/c of B&B's prematurity, and I have often wanted to do it again to have the "normal" experience, but 1.)it's not guaranteed to be normal and 2.)we are really happy with our family the way it is and don't feel an overwhelming desire to expand it.

BTW, you look amazing already!

Cristi said...

She is so completely precious! I cant imagine Averys first day of school. It seems so far away, but I well know it will come so much faster than we can realize. Hope Kaytlin thrives and enjoys and learns lots.

Caro said...

Hi, my name is Carolina, I've contacted you by youtube. My mom and I are IN LOVE with Kaitlyn, and are so happy to know she is at school and getting better with feeding issues!We would like a lot to see more videos of her, could you share us more? We know now you are very bussy with two wonderfull kids. Congratulations! We send kisses to Kaitlyn and her little brother Quinn.

Caro said...

Hi, my name is Carolina. Me and my mome are IN LOVE with Kaitlyn, we've been seeing her videos 6 months ago, and are sooo happy that she goes now to school and gets better on her feeding issues... We would like a lot to see more videos, could you share more? We know you are now too bussy with two wonderful kids. Congratulations! We send kisses to Kaitlyn and her little brother Quinn.

The Microblogologist said...

My niece started kindergarten in August, I am totally in denial about it! I hope Kaitlyn loves school and hope that the snag in her feeding resolves soon.


Anonymous said...

Hi Liz.

My daughter Julia also regressed a bit in some aspects of behavior when her sister was born (especially regarding tantrums). it is very normal. It can last from a month to a year. But it passes, and children learn to appreciate their sibling's company. My daughter went from screaming 'mom, put the doll down and pick me up' , to ignoring her sister, to actually talking, hugging and playing everyday with her. ciao! Anna

abby said...

Hi Liz,

Great update and I;m glad that K is doing well on the school front. Sorry that the eating issues are still there---I keep hoping that our kids figure it all out and/or stop using food in this way, and maybe they'll get there some day. We're doing everything we can, and it makes sense that K. would regress in this respect after Quinn came home. Hopefully it'll be short-lived. She's made such progress this year, and I am sure there's more to come in that direction over the next one.

Anyway, you're doing a great job, and such a great one, in fact, that I've awarded you for it. See our blog, and take your time in following up -- I know your plate is way full.

Kristie in Dallas said...

Your kids are both beautiful and perfect. They look a lot like each other too. You're a great mom. I look for updates every day but I know you are busy so I will just keep checking back daily.

You're a SUPER mom.

Anonymous said...

Is everything okay? Haven't heard from you in awhile! worried about everyone - but know it is probably that you have 2 now and time is precious!

Katie said...

I am also thinking about putting my daughter in K-3...when the time comes (she'll be one next months, lol...and she's also a micro - 25w). I figure it should at least be good for her social skills since we have to be so careful about being around other kids for a while. I hope it goes well!

Princess Abigail said...

Hey folks ... is everything ok? haven't heard from you all for a while. We are thinking of you lots and hope Quinn and his Big Sis are doing fine ... the Bernard Bunch would like a photo fix soon please!!!!

Princess Abigail said...

Hey folks ... is everything ok? haven't heard from you all for a while. We are thinking of you lots and hope Quinn and his Big Sis are doing fine ... the Bernard Bunch would like a photo fix soon please!!!!

Jennifer said...

Happy 3rd Birthday Kaitlyn and Corrine! I know it is probably bittersweet but I hope you all have a good one!