Saturday, April 24, 2010

In Which A Lot Of Things Happen

Well, we've had an eventful couple of days.

First I have to explain this picture.  Yesterday morning Connor and I were looking at pictures of relatives online before it was time for school.  I pulled up a picture of Jeremy's brother, who is an eyebrow ring-wearing, Mohawk-sporting Nuclear Engineer currently working on his PhD in Michigan.  Connor took one look at his uncle's latest picture and got all excited.

"Hair!  Hair!  Want hair!  WANT HAIR!!!" he signed.

I wasn't about to cut the kid's gorgeous hair.  But if the little guy gets psyched enough about something that he'll actually communicate about it, it's really, really hard to say no to him.  And I did happen to have some hair pomade . . .

He loved it.

Seriously, I parked his wheelchair in front of our full-length mirror in the library as I was getting his stuff ready to go for school, and he spent the whole time admiring himself, signing "hair!" and gently touching it.  I put him in his new rocker t-shirt for added effect, and off to school he went.

So while he spent the morning watching a circus performance put on by some of the older children, I was getting our things together for our overnight trip.  Jer and I pooled our respite care for the month and so Joanna was arriving to watch Connor for us that night, and we were taking off for a lovely B&B on the mountain.  We would be spending all of the following day there, and would return to the house in the evening.  It would be the first overnight trip we'd taken with just the two of us in over nine months, which is way, way too long.  I had just confirmed our reservations and was sitting down to write an early blog when I got a phone call from the school.

Connor was having a seizure.

Apparently he was in the middle of eating when he slumped over and the seizure started.  This one was a pretty short one, and while he did stop breathing it was only for a few seconds and they didn't have to do mouth-to-mouth, but it's never a good thing when he has one of these.  By the time I got there he was okay again; I sent the paramedics away and took Connor home.  He went down for his usual post-seizure nap.

Jer and I talked about it.  I called and canceled our reservations. 

Okay and honestly, I cried about it just a little bit, because hey, I'd been looking forward to this trip for weeks, and I was so excited about getting away with Jeremy out of the city and spending some serious time together exploring a new place.  But the bed and breakfast was over an hour and a half away, and we'd be traveling through some of that area with no cell phone reception.  Though we knew Joanna was more than competent enough to take care of him, we just couldn't justify being that far away when he was at risk for more seizures-- especially in an area where we'd potentially be difficult to contact.

I called Joanna, and she said that she was still comfortable watching him.  We knew that we really needed this trip to recharge our batteries.  So we decided that maybe we could salvage our trip-- we would see if we could find something a little closer to home.  I called every B&B in Tacoma, and then started in on Seattle.  We were a scant four hours from the time when Joanna would be arriving, and I was beginning to think I needed to start in on the Motel 6s, when I caught a lucky break.  Somebody at the Greenlake Guesthouse in Seattle had to cancel their trip because of that volcano with the unpronounceable name, so they had a vacancy.  Not only would they let us stay for just one night, but they'd let us check in late as well.  I booked it immediately.

So because I was all frazzled and needed some time out of the house, Jeremy, who has earned his sainthood many times over by this point, hung out with the boy while I drove out for a shopping trip and lunch with a friend.  Then I came back home, we ran around and finished packing, Joanna showed up and we were off.

It wasn't the trip I thought we were taking.  But you know what?  We had a great time.

The B&B was amazing-- it's a beautiful Craftsman style place, our bed was comfy, the owners are really nice, and they served an unbelievably delicious breakfast (ginger-coconut seasoned fruit and avocado-tomato-cheese omelets with sour cream and mango salsa and whole wheat toast and sausage and juice and tea or coffee: can you say yum?).  Also they have an adorable beagle who likes to be scratched behind the ears.  If you're ever in Seattle I highly recommend it, though those of you with mobility issues need to be aware that the house does have a number of stairs and isn't wheelchair friendly. 

So we spent a lovely night there, checked out in the morning after the aforementioned deliciously scrumptious breakfast, and then went for a pleasant but rather windy walk along the lake shore.  Then we drove around the area looking at all the beautiful Craftsman style homes.  A trip to Uwajimaya-- the huge Asian grocery store in the middle of the International District-- was next, where I bought myself a Thai cookbook.  After that we drove down to the Museum of Flight and checked out some of the neat exhibits.

We drove back into downtown, parked at the Convention Center, and ate at a deli in the area before settling down (of course) with a book or two at a coffee shop.  We spent the afternoon reading and sipping on tea and coffee, respectively.  Finally we headed home, where Jer left for a work out at the YMCA and I hopped in the van to go retrieve Connor, who had been out and about with Joanna and her husband Jake, and was ending the day in Tacoma.

He apparently slept well and then had a great (seizure-free) day; he especially enjoyed playing with Joanna's Newfoundland, who apparently liked to lick his toes.  He crashed as soon as we got home, so evidently he played pretty hard.  Not only did Connor have a really good time, but Joanna and Jake even cleaned our house while we were gone!  I seriously have no idea how we got so lucky on the respite care front. 

So Jer and I got to take our much needed trip, and while it wasn't anything like what we'd originally planned, it was still a major stress reliever and I'm glad that we went.  I don't think we'll let another nine months go by before we do it again! 

Anyway, that's why I didn't blog yesterday.  Sorry.



Ericka said...

Sounds like a great time!
I've decided to start leaving more comments on the blogs I read :)

MFA Mama said...

1. OMG the hair! It's adorable! I'm cracking up laughing--you have a little punk rocker on your hands! Also, the texture of spiked hair isn't unlike that of blades of grass, so perhaps you could use this to your advantage with Connor's sensory work? I'm thinking Chia Pet head (I know you can get various politicians, and any human head would work) with a mohawk...

2. What the heck, Connor, with the seizures lately! Has he had a growth spurt and "outgrown" his meds or something? It's always a kick in the pants when a kid who'd been doing well starts having increased symptoms and you can't put your finger on why. Boo, seizures!

3. Totally jealous of your getaway; even if it wasn't exactly what you'd planned it sounds divine. Drooling over the breakfast description...mmm...

leah said...

I'm glad you managed to salvage your night away! Your respite care worker sounds absolutely wonderful.

I really hope Connor's new spate of seizure activity settles down with the increased medication dose- you could use some "boring" weeks, I am sure!

That hair is seriously cute- every little boy needs to go "punk" every once in a while!

Wherever HE Leads We'll Go said...

I love the hair! He is the cutest little rocker I have ever seen!

I really hate seizures! Hate them! I am hoping that things will settle down as Connor adjusts to the new dose of meds.

Your night away sounds great. I am jealous of your wonderful respite worker - we have NOT had good luck in this area!

Julia said...

Wow, wow, and wow! Great hairstyle, fie on seizures and a pox on their houses, fantastic breakfast, and Joanna and Jake sound marvelous. I'm sure they realized that's exactly what you needed to come home to after such a mercurial few days; how kind of them to go above and beyond.

Herding Grasshoppers said...

That pic of Connor is seriously ADORABLE. I love that he signed, "HAIR! HAIR! WANT HAIR!" That's great!

What an emotional roller-coaster, and what a great compromise. I know you don't need my approval, but I applaud you for still having your overnight getaway. You guys are great parents :D

Praying for stable, uneventful days,


rbn said...

I bike past that B&B all the time! I'll have to keep it in mind for out-of-town company.

Glad you had a little escape, and I hope life is more uneventful these days...

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