Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Life Lately

Since it's been a while since I've really blogged, I thought I'd catch up on what we've up to lately.

About a month ago, Paige started local school. She goes two mornings a week and really enjoys it.

Her teacher sends pictures every day of what they did that day-I look forward to these pictures so much! I love seeing her interact-she's my little extrovert!

My parents came to visit the end of October, which meant Date Nite!

My sister, Sarah, came to visit a few weeks ago and brought Adelyn, my niece, who is the same age as Paige. We had the best time!!! My mom sent a few matching outfits, and everywhere we went people assumed they were twins.

A friend of mine organized some of the foreign families to get together and hand out candy for Halloween. The girls went to about 8 houses to trick or treat and Paige is still talking about it.

A local coffee shop had pumpkins for sale one Saturday and special pumpkin drinks and treats. It wasn't exactly a pumpkin patch, but the kids had a blast!

Then there's little man. Who is just a bundle of fun and always makes me smile.

Joshua is starting to imitate everything Paige does-the good and the bad. 

We had to go to Hong Kong to see Joshua's specialist last month, and the kids loved playing in the big bed at the hotel. Our kids love hotels, which is a good thing since we travel pretty often. 

That's our life lately!

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Saturday, November 12, 2016

Joshua at 18 Months

It's been a while!! This post says 18 months, but it's more like 20 months!

Joshua turned 18 months on August 24th. I've been meaning to write this post, but we had a visit planned to see his pediatric endocrinologist in Hong Kong in October, and I wanted to wait for his official growth stats.

Joshua is doing really well with daily growth hormone shots. We give him a shot every night, alternating location between his arms, legs, and bottom. He rarely cries and takes it like a champ. He's been on the hormone injections for about 9 months now. I feel like he's doing great and growing really well. I can tell a huge difference, especially in his clothes.

But the doctor expected more growth at this point. He has increased his dosage and we go back next month to see how he's progressing. Joshua still on the growth chart yet for height or weight, but he's getting close!

Playing with cars in his sister's room

Joshua is such an easy going baby. I say baby because I still refuse to believe he's a toddler yet. He can throw a fit like the rest of them, but overall he's pretty happy and easy going. My sister just came for a visit, and said "Joshua is so cute! Don't you wish he was a twin and you had two of him?" Joshua is adorable and I love him to pieces, but one is enough. :)

Joshua's favorite things are to play with cars, trains, and anything that has wheels. He loves anything Thomas the Train, and his favorite book is Little Blue Truck. He will play with cars and trains all day long. He mostly likes to play with them on the couch and line them up in rows. He also loves to climb on everything. A few months ago he managed to climb up to a high windowsill a few times and nearly gave me a heart attack.

20 Month Stats:

Weight: 9 kg or 20 lbs

Height: 77.7 cm or 30 1/2 inches

Size Diaper: He is still in cloth size medium and wears medium disposables at night

Size Clothes: 12-18 months

Size Shoes: 4-4 1/2

Teeth: 16, i think? I know he has everything but his 2 year molars. 

Words: Joshua was a much later talker than Paige. Joshua can understand and follow directions, but doesn't talk a lot. He can repeat or try to at least, almost everything we ask him to. He says mama, dada, sister, Jiejie (chinese for older sister), tag tag (his favorite blankie), snack, poo poo, car, more, hi, bye, and a few others. He can make a lot of animal noises too. 

Sleep: He is a great sleeper!! He sleeps from about 7:15-6:45/7 most days. He naps from about 1-3, sometimes longer. He goes down really easy. We even took his pacifier away in August and he adjusted really well. He does have to sleep with his taggie. It's his comfort item. We sing him Jesus Loves Me before he goes to bed. 

Sleeping on the way home from vacation

Food: Joshua is a pretty good eater overall. His favorite things are goldfish, broccoli, oatmeal, ice cream, carrots, and mostly anything sweet. He is wary of trying new foods, but we are working on it. He eats fruits and vegetables pretty well though. He loves Chinese food! I've given him juice a few times, and he doesn't seem to like it, which is fine with me. He eats oatmeal for breakfast most mornings. He LOVES homemade granola bars and yogurt. He usually only drinks milk at breakfast and before bedtime. 

Here are some of his firsts from the last few months:

- First haircut

- First trip to the mountains and went to 9000 feet in elevation

- Had tube surgery

- First trip to the beach and first real vacation

That's our little cheeseball at 20 months! 

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Thursday, March 10, 2016

Why Little Man J is Little

Yes. I am well aware my blog basically died over these past several months. So much has happened that I can't even begin to catch up on. So I'll start with one of the big things.

If you follow me on Instagram, you've noticed all pictures of Joshua have the hashtag-#littlemanJ. I started using it when he was first born. I didn't know at the time however how real that little nickname would be.

Joshua was born 6 pounds, 6 ounces and 19 inches long, at 39 weeks. He was in the 10% for height and weight and remained right on his growth curve for the first two months.

When we went in for his 4 month check up, we found out he had completely dropped off the growth chart in height and weight! At the time, we didn't really know what was going on. I added back in more feedings to see if it made a difference. It didn't. For a few months we tried everything to get him to gain weight-I nursed him more often, offered a bottle after he nursed, pumped after each feeding, gave him solids.....and none of it made a difference. From birth, Joshua has always had a small appetite. He never nursed more than a few minutes on each side, and I could never get him to take more milk, even from a bottle.

We saw a specialist in Hong Kong, and a few other doctors. Everyone agreed that he was just small. Daniel is 5'6, and I'm 5 feet, so the general consensus was that he was just little like his mom and dad.

I remember one day crying because nothing we were doing was working. I told Daniel, in my gut, I knew it wasn't a nutritional or food issue. I couldn't explain it, but I just knew that wasn't it.

Joshua weighed about 12-13 pounds and was 24 inches long for several months. He was severely falling off the growth chart. People were always asking how old he was, and shocked when we told them. He always looks so much younger and smaller than his actual age.

We had routine blood work done when he was 9 months old. Everything came back normal.

We had a family vacation planned in mid-December, to go to the States. It was the perfect time to see a pediatrician and find out what was going on. He was 10 months when we flew to the States.

The day after we arrived in Oklahoma, we saw an amazing pediatrician!! She was pretty shocked at his lack of growth, and ordered several tests. They needed so much blood for the tests, we had to go in several days in a row because they couldn't take that much blood out of him at one time. He also had a check x-ray and bone age scan.

Joshua's bone scan showed that his bones were 4.5 months. So at the time of the test he was 10 months old, but his body (bone age) was only 4.5 months!

We found out about a week later that his IGF (growth hormone) levels were low and we were referred to a pediatric endocrinologist at OU Children's. Which BTW-can not say enough about how much we loved every single doctor and nurse at OU Children's. I cried at the end of every appointment. I am SO grateful that we were able to have Joshua's tests and diagnosis done in english and by extremely knowledgeable and kind doctors.

Joshua had an MRI of his brain and a 6 hour test that they drew his blood every 30 minutes. This test was to confirm he had growth hormone deficiency. Joshua was amazing and barely even cried! He had to fast for over 12 hours and that was the hardest part. He was pretty tired after all of it.

The test confirmed his body does not make enough growth hormone-which explains why he was so little!

So, now he gets a daily injection of growth hormone. We give him a shot every night, and he doesn't even cry. It's a small needle and he does really well with it. He will need to have a daily injection until about puberty, so for about the next 15 years.

Joshua is growing. He has gained about 1 pound and over 1 inch in the last month, since we've started the injections. I know that doesn't seem like very much, but we can tell a big difference. He hasn't really grown much in several months, so any growth is pretty noticeable.

I didn't do a one year post for him yet, but here are his stats of right now:

Height: 68 cm, about 26 inches
Weight: 7.3 kg, about 16 pounds
Size Clothes: 9 months

Developmentally, Joshua is right on track. He isn't walking yet, but he is really close. Because his bone age is so far behind right now, he doesn't have the full muscle mass that both children his age have. But despite being so small, he has done almost everything right on schedule.

He's still not on the growth chart yet, but I'm hoping that within the year he will be. Grow baby grow!

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