Thursday, January 22, 2015

Trying to Save Teeth

Over the last few years, the official diagnosis on Secora's chart has rotated between "sensory processing disorder" or "sensory integration disorder" or "skin sensation disturbance" or "feeding problems" or "nutritional problems" or "eating disorder" (I hated that one...that showed up on her chart when she was 10 months old).  They're all really just different names for the same problem and the specific wording/diagnostic code depends on what search term the doc types into the computer that day.   No matter the name, the medical concerns aren't always quite as simple as just getting her to gain weight.

Lately, it's her teeth.  She's seen a dentist every 6 months since she was a year old.  We have a great pediatric dentist we've seen for years that's known as the best pedi dentist in our town.  Every dental visit, I sit and cringe waiting for him to tell me she has cavities.  I figured they were coming because her diet sucks.  I also had to hold her down for a simple exam, so I knew she couldn't sit through a filling.   But every visit, she's gotten a good report.

At the end of September, she had two spots that didn't yet need fillings, but we needed to watch.  I stepped up the flossing in an effort to head off a problem.  Then, right around Christmas, it seemed like her teeth started to all just rot away.  I could literally see chunks of tooth missing all of a sudden.  I frantically called the dentist and took her in for an exam and the news was just as bad as I'd expected.  At least half of her teeth are so rotted they will need to be capped.  A few are so bad they may need to be pulled and have spacers put in.  He kept checking the chart for the date of her last exam because even he was shocked they had all decayed so badly so quickly.  She DID cooperate with the exam wonderfully this time around, but was clearly barely holding back her panic, so she still can't sit through a single filling, much less repeated visits for such extensive work.  There's also a decent chance she'll regress on eating again anytime work is done.  So it was decided to schedule her for a trip to the hospital where it can all be done at one time under general anesthesia.  It takes a few weeks to get that scheduled, so right now we're looking at 10 caps, but there are a few other suspect areas that I'm betting will need work by the time we get there.

The dentist thinks her teeth deteriorated so quickly due to a combination of her low vitamin D and her pediasure intake.  He was very clear that if she needs pediasure she has to take it, but also said it's pretty awful for teeth.  She had already started extra vitamin D supplementation and I'm pretty much brushing her teeth every time she eats anything now in an effort to save the rest of the teeth.

Feeding problems......the gift that keeps on giving.  

Thursday, January 15, 2015

2015 Goals

There's a lot of upheaval and uncertainty looming this year, so I've had to think over what goals are both feasible and reasonable to prioritize.  I think I've narrowed it down!

1) Develop short and long term goals for my business.  During this stage of life, I've been just taking lactation business as it comes.  I work almost entirely on word of mouth referrals and have a volume of business I can comfortably handle.  As the girls get older, it will be easier for me to do more and I want to spend some time thinking about what that will look like.  Josh also feels like I should think bigger.  I'm good at what I do, I have stacks of thank you notes from mothers I've helped.  He's suggested I think about becoming a conference speaker or writing a book or similar resource.  Those would be long term goals if I decided to do them!  Short term, something along the lines of better accounting and marketing and organization in general.

2) Maintain tri fitness in the absence of races. I asked for an entry to my favorite triathlon for my birthday, but that's probably the only race I'm going to do in 2015.  Before I knew the medical bills looming in our future, I was contemplating doing a half ironman this year though.  If I want to keep that possibility on the horizon for NEXT year, I have to stay in shape.  I will be pressed for time during a large chunk of the year, so I don't want to aim too high on mileage, but I want enough to keep me in a place where I can pick up a serious training plan next winter.  With that in mind, I'm aiming to swim at least 50 miles, bike at least 325 miles, and run at least 120 miles during 2015.  I also want to log at least 75 strength training workouts.    I don't generally record my workouts, so I might have to make myself a sticker chart like the kids!

3) Not have too much debt at the end of the year. Um.....hard to quantify this one.  We don't yet know what final bills will be, but we'll probably hit Secora's out of pocket max when it's all said and done.  We also really want to make it to our nephew's college graduation this year, which will involve some amount of expense even though we plan to drive and camp our way there.   We don't generally carry any credit card debt, but I don't know that "no credit card debt by the end of the year" is going to happen this year.  Something like less than $5000 owed on credit card or not-yet-paid medical bills is probably attainable, but a reminder for me to not grab dinner at the local burger joint.

4) Start Christmas sewing early.  There have been too many years where I get a grand plan to sew some big Christmas gift in November.  This year, I'm going to actively look for gift ideas in July.  Then I have to convince myself to actually work on and finish them without a deadline looming, but it's gotta be better than my usual last minute ideas.

The first half of 2015, at least, is going to be just getting through each challenge one step at a time, so I think that's enough for this year!

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