Thursday, July 2, 2009

Upper G Yuck!

Off to the hospital this morning, bright and early. Because Reed couldn't eat for four hours prior to his 7:45 appointment, I had to wake him at 3:30 to eat. And, as luck would have it, I was unable to fall back asleep when I crawled back into bed at 4:15. I must have been nervous. Or scared. Or a combination of both. Don't let me fool you; I'm not entirely made of steel. :)

Despite my nerves, the entire process went flawlessly. The staff and doctors were all great (probably because I was toting around a very adorable baby!) and Reed did such a great job. I was able to stay in the x-ray room with him the entire time, and got to hold his hands and feed him the barium as they took pictures. (Side note: Just like when you get x-rays taken at the dentist, they had me wear a lead cover-up for safety. What I thought was so cute was they even had a little lead "blanket" to cover Reed's little man parts! Oh the things I find humor in...) Anyway, Reed did marvelously, and surprised me by holding out on any kind of screaming, considering he was going on 4.5 hours with no food!

Because "live" pictures were taken, and Dr. Cross, a gastroenterologist, was taking the photographs, he was able to let me know right away what he was seeing. The good news: all of Reed's organs look normal, and are functioning as they should be. YAY! The bad news: he can be officially diagnosed with gastroesophageal reflux disease (or GERD). But the good news in that is that he is not refluxing back up and into his lungs.

So, what does all this mean? We have yet to find out. I expect to hear from Reed's pediatrician soon about these results and if our current course of care will be altered in any way. In the 36 hours he's been on the Zantac, I can't say I've seen much improvement. Don't get me wrong, he certainly has his happy moments...

...but his bad moments can best be described by Heather Armstrong, one of my favorite 'mom bloggers.' As she describes her newborn baby's "cry," I find myself nodding with familiarity and sympathy.

"...[she] doesn't cry? I'm serious. She doesn't string together a chorus of wailing like many other babies her age, but...the kid can yell. And I mean, YELL. Like, the referee has just called the runner out at home base and the coach runs out, throws his ball cap on the dirt and starts rattling off a string of obscenities that I wouldn't even repeat on this website, I KNOW CAN YOU EVEN BELIEVE IT, that kind of yelling. Pot-bellied, weathered by years of tragedy and illness and unemployment kind of yelling."

That's Reed. That's been Reed since the second he was born. I remember in Reed's first moments of life, as he was laying across my chest, I was trying to sooth him as the brutal realities of being born were upsetting him. Brad said, "It's ok. Let him cry. I like it."

See, so once again, it's all Brad's fault. :)

This motherhood gig is the best job I've ever had. It's also been the hardest. There are no words to describe the way my heart feels when my baby is hurting. Mix that together with the continued sleep deprivation and toddler tantrums, and my cup is full. It's when I see the smiles, and hear the "I love yous" and get to snuggle with my little guy as he sleeps, feeling his small breaths against my cheek, that is when my cup runneth over...

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