Well, it’s been a bit since I’ve updated this blog, so I wouldn’t be surprised at all if nobody reads this post- but that’s Ok.
It’s been an interesting year and a half since I last wrote. Nora is growing like a weed- it still amazes me. Seems like every time I blink the little cutie has grown again! I’m sure that every parent makes this comment, but it’s my prerogative to say it again.
Nora’s moved into toddler-hood with a vengeance full of will and curiosity and boundless energy. This presents us with a challenge- the girl will climb EVERYTHING. About two months after starting walking we had to take her off the ladder that I was using to put things in the attic- she was on the top step and peeking into the attic!
She’s full of words, some of them spoken (most of them now) but many are still in ASL that was patiently and laboriously taught to us by Joanne Woolley of Sign 4 Baby. (If you’re in San Diego county, I highly recommend her.) I think that teaching Nora sign has really helped her and minimized the frustrations that C and I would have faced as we were trying to learn what she needed. Our conversations with Nora have turned into a patois of spoken and signed English but we can understand what she wants (most of the time) and that helps a great deal.
Well, we’re off to the county fair with my brother Rob for the day. It should be fun!
October 25, 2009 10:44 pm
Finally got Nora to sleep – it’s been a rough evening. Candice crashed a little earlier this evening she’s still exhausted from her ordeal and so she needs the extra sleep. However once I got Nora to calm down and burp she fell right asleep. Now if only I could do the same.
On Weds October 14, 2009 – Nora was born. Mom labored for 26 hours and then pushed for 4 after all that hard work went nowhere Nora was delivered via an emergency c-section. She was born 22″ (55.88 cm) long, 8lbs 9 oz (3,883.88 g) and absolutely perfect in every way. Candice’s Mother and I were in the operatory for the section – a slight departure from the SOP for the OR team, I guess. Once Nora was freed from her predicament it became readily apparent why she couldn’t come out the old fashioned way- she was stuck on one of mom’s pubic bones and was never going to come free.
It was what experts would call a difficult birth.
Mom and baby spent the next 3 days in the hospital recovering from their joint ordeal- the hospital stay wasn’t really fun for them, but I’ll leave that for Candice to describe. It wasn’t really fun, since there was NO space for me to hang around and less privacy and her room-mates were really annoying.
Nora smiling and holding my finger
We came home on Saturday and went over to new grandma and granddad’s place so that they could spend some quality time with their new granddaughter and so Candice and I could get a nap- part of the annoying part of her hospital stay was that the room-mates stayed up all night nattering.
Sunday was much of the same, only with football. Everyone is a football fan- so Nora got to watch her first games.
On Monday we had our first “Well Baby” appointment. Nora has started to put weight back on and we got the happy news that we didn’t have to wake her every 2 hours to feed at night anymore- but we could wait until she woke up and demanded food. That means more sleep but ruder awakenings at night if we don’t wake when she starts to stir.
I took this week off to help out around the house- because of the c-section Candice really can’t do a whole lot- so I’ve been doing my best impression of a butler. I’m pretty bad at it but at least I’m trying, right?
Anyhow, she’s captured my heart in her little tiny hands. She also has a mischievous little grin which spells trouble.
September 15, 2009 10:56 am
So, I’m back in the harness at work. It was difficult to come back- having quite a few people come to my desk to express their condolences made it difficult to really get started for the day, and then end of the day was a meeting, so it wasn’t very productive. The weekend saw our first Lamaze class- I’m not sure how usefull it will be, but it moved quickly and was somewhat entertaining if only to look at the other (fathers|mothers)-to-be. The travel system that my mom ordered for us also arrived- that was a big stressor for Candice so it’s good to have it. Now we’re just waiting for the football so to speak.
Candice is VERY uncomfortable right now- with an injured pelvis, sore ribs, and a baby pressing on her diaphram which makes it hard to breathe. She’ll be full term in on about the 18th, so anytime after that could be the time … when people ask me when she’s due I’ve been saying anytime between 9/18 – 10/18 (her due date is 10/12). Candice wants Nora to hold out until October but I’m not sure that’s gonna happen. Until then, she’s got me in: Infant CPR, Child Care Basics, Lamaze… I think she thinks that I need some education on this sort of thing.
I do, I suppose.
In other news, It seems that Nora is a pre-natal football fan- she gets really active when Candice is cheering during football games. I like this idea very much.
Edit: Happy Birthday, Mom!
September 9, 2009 9:53 pm
My father passed away one week ago today. His full military honors were granted yesterday at the Missouri Veterans Cemetery in Higginsville, Mo. by a combined American Legion and Air Force honor guard. It was a fitting and heartbreaking goodbye. My dad was a good man and I miss him.
Many people have written to ask how I am doing. I’m fine; my heart hurts, but I will move forward- there is no other option. I’ve spent the last week with my family and even though it’s been a somber occasion there have been some good times. I’ll be able to take those memories home with me as well as the memories of our final goodbye.
Now I can turn my focus to my pregnant wife- we will have our new addition in a little more than a month (on the VERY outside) and I need to prepare. Dad’s illness took a great deal of my focus without my even knowing. It wasn’t until it was gone that I realized how much I really was worrying. Now I should be able to devote some of those freed brain cycles on helping C. prepare.
September 3, 2009 11:05 pm
My Father, whom I have often written about in this blog, passed away yesterday afternoon after a protracted battle with cancer.
In the end it happened quickly, more so than anyone had expected.
Rest well Dad. I miss you.
(part 2 of 2)
It is impossible to put into words how difficult this is for me. I need to be here, but I also feel like he’s slipping away and I may not get the opportunity to see him – if he’s put in hospice care I’m not sure he’d be allowed to travel out here once Butterfly leaves the cocoon.
My mother tells me that he’s in no immediate danger and that maybe he’ll be allowed to come home once they have the pain under control.
I think that last phrase is the worst part for me- I was prepared to hear that he’d died of a stroke or a heart attack not that he’d linger for a year or two in pain towards the end as vital organs are consumed by the out of control machinery of biology that is cancer. I know that it’s hard for my mom to sit there and watch- when I talk to her on the phone sometimes I can hear the exhaustion and the suppressed anguish. At least, she has something that she can do- even if it is sit there and hold his hand, bulldog the hospital staff, and take him decent meals. From here, there is nothing that I can do except call him regularly and make sure that Mom doesn’t need anything that I can provide.
All of this tempers the joy that I feel when anticipating our little girl. In some ways, it’s good- when tasted, the bitter makes the sweet all that much sweeter- but I’m worried that sometimes it comes off to C as ambivalence.
(This is part 1 of a 2 )
So, it’s been about two weeks since I last bothered to update- and what weeks they’ve been.
The first part of them were spent getting ready to go back to Mo. for my brother S’s wedding. It was good to see him hitched. Pictures are on Facebook and all over the place, so I won’t bother to link them here. Besides, I’m too lazy to go hunt a good one down. I did some basic videography for the ceremony, but I haven’t really taken the time to process it with iMovie (I don’t have Final Cut). If there’s some demand, I’ll post the video here for others to view.
The real stress inducer for this week has, without a doubt been my dad’s failing health. When we were last back to visit in May, he was looking MUCH better, even though there were still some detectable tumors in in his lungs, his oncologist was confident that they wouldn’t really impact his quality of life and they were going to monitor them for a bit – rather than attempt another course of chemo, since the chemo that the cancer had responded too was rather old and more toxic than most.
So once the chemo had flushed itself from his system he started to feel better and my parents went about their lives; nervously, I think, but they got to go out and have some fun.
Well, about a month ago he started to feel worse again. This past trip, he looked worse to me than he had when we saw him after his first round of chemo. Finally, on the day we departed mom convinced him to go back to the hospital.
Which is where he is right now.
Apparently, the pain in his back, his inability to keep down foods, and extreme exhaustion is because his liver- quoting my mother here “looks like swiss cheese” with tumors. From my sister’s blog I got a piece of information that nobody had told me – they’ve categorized it as stage 4 liver cancer. Additionally the tumors in his lungs are now the size of dimes and they didn’t get an exact count- in may there were 14- I expect that number has gone up significantly.
Tomorrow morning he’s supposed to have a needle biopsy; It can take anywhere for 2 days to 2 weeks to get the specific sub-typing that would allow for chemo to begin.
One of the interesting things about expecting a child is watching the random ways in which Candice’s belly moves when Butterfly kicks her. It’s sort of cool to all of a sudden see it move to the left or right because someone has decided that particular side is offensive and really needs to be kicked, punched, headbutted, or whatever. It also leads to a lot of “Ow!” being heard around the house as Butterfly decides to pummel her surroundings. I’m sure that all of the mothers (and moms to be) in the audience feel Candice’s pain. From my side though- the best I can do is be understanding and try not to shoot diet pepsi out my nose when Candice makes a particularly funny facial expression due to these prenatal antics. Also, I’ve noticed that Butterfly likes to change where she sits regularly. Sometimes Candice won’t look as pregnant as she is, but 20 minutes later when Butterfly has moved it looks like she’s MUCH further along; it can disturbing to see happen.
Expectant Fathers! Another fun game is to take a depth gauge and measure the depth of her belly button as the pregnancy progresses. She’ll love it!
First a great big thanks to my parents, who had a portable air conditioner sent to us this week, right before the heatwave hit here in SoCal. It arrived just in time and has been able to keep our living room about 12 degrees cooler than the ambient temperature during the heat of the day. This has made things immeasurably more bearable. Even the cats, who’d rather be outside unless it’s time to sleep, stay around the air conditioner. I’ve only lived here for 8 years or so and this is the most humid I’ve ever felt it– it’s made it really sticky and unpleasant… not so bad that I feel like I’m breathing water, but still bad.
Candice’s begun writing about being pregnant over on her blog: Good And Fine. If you want to keep up with her feelings and experiences I encourage you to head over there and take a gander. As the due date approaches my feelings and worries about parenthood will start to get more concrete so this blog will start to get a little less random- I’ll try to tag appropriately so those who aren’t interested can skip it.
It’s now the beginning of the third trimester- I don’t know where the second went it flew by so quickly! From the outside it seems like things are a little rougher; the heat was really starting to take its toll and she’s more uncomfortable by the day. From what I hear this is to be expected but still it sucks. I am starting to really feel the pressure to make progress faster in getting the baby’s room ready- but it’s so hot that I can’t really work on it except at night. I did get some stuff put up into the attic, though, and that was a real accomplishment. Our friend Rose has been down helping us get ready; I’ve really appreciated her help and am sure that I’m going to need more of it.
At work we finished off the latest sprint prior – we’re now about halfway through the current release and my major feature has been completed. I’m going to be rolling over to some simpler data acquisition tasks and minor feature tweaks- it should be a nice break from really spending all day in the profiler trying to get a 2% reduction in the amount of time spent on a method – I don’t mind that but it’s nice to have a change. Maybe I can get away from seeing lock sequencing problems in my dreams.
We had dinner with my old boss and his girlfriend tonight. They drove down from LA to say hi and chat with me about things that they need to do to her (his GF’s) website to allow it to get better search results. I was able to give a few pointers but nothing really earth shattering. I guess it was better than nothing for them, though.