Returning to normal

Life is slowly beginning to return to normal — just normal with an incapacitated two-and-a-half year-old in a body cast who needs almost constant attention.

We had our second visit from a home health care nurse tonight. She was very nice and Dominic was good for her, much better than he was for nurse number one on Saturday. Saturday’s nurse saw him when he was just waking up (not his best time). Tonight’s nurse saw him just before bed (usually his most active time).

We’re a little concerned about some redness showing up on the back of his legs. It’ll be challenging to keep the cast dry around his diaper area. Yeah, I nearly tossed my cookies helping Vickey change his first poopy diaper after getting the cast. And that’s all I’ll say about that hopefully soon-to-be-forgotten experience.

Overall, Dominic’s vital signs are very normal and good. He had a bit of an elevated temperature tonight but we suspect that was from lounging on a comfy sofa under several blankets with a sweatshirt on and a cast that covers three-quarters of his body most of the evening. Who wouldn’t be warm?

We’re doing our best to turn him on his side or lay him on his stomach for a little bit at a time, but those aren’t popular positions.

I was able to play cars with him for a little while tonight while he was on his tummy. And I did set him on my leg while we watched part of Shrek 3, which we all enjoyed.

So, besides feeling like I’ve missed weeks, not days, of work, and the fact that we’re in-home nurses for Dominic, life is pretty much like normal.

We owe Grandma Snow so much for taking the time to be with us. She bought Dominic a Red Ryder wagon and we took him on his first out-of-the-home excursion last night to dinner at Mark and Amber’s. He lies on a bunch of pillows strategically placed around the wagon and gets pulled around like a king. We only stayed there long enough to eat though because Dominic wanted to return home (perhaps too many kids and too much noise for his liking).

We were told by the child protective services social worker that she’d need to come to our home on Saturday to see Dominic and check things out. We didn’t hear from her so we called and left a message. We left another message today and still no word. Perhaps they’ve decided to spend their time more wisely.

We have a meeting scheduled tomorrow with Eliana’s school principal to discuss how the school handled the police interview that took place with her during school time on Thursday. From what we know, it looks like a couple school district policies were violated. Not sure what we’ll do about it at this point, but hopefully this situation will provide a good learning experience for those involved to not repeat any errors.

Dominic’s seeing both our pediatrician and the pediatric orthopedic surgeon tomorrow. They’re going to check him out and check out his cast to be sure there aren’t any problem spots (tight spots; which seems like an oxymoron since a cast is supposed to be tight, isn’t it?).

Interestingly, another side note for you, the first doctor’s name written on our hospital discharge papers is our pediatrician, the doctor whose office hadn’t heard about Dominic’s broken leg from the hospital on Wednesday or Thursday and didn’t learn of the accident until I called them myself on Friday morning to see if they would, one: provide supporting documentation demonstrating our consistency of care for Dominic, that he was current on his immunizations and had no record of bruising or injuries; and two: confirm the appropriateness of the treatment Dominic was receiving at the hospital.

About an hour after I spoke with our doctor the attending physician at the hospital came in to say we were free to go.

The hospital certainly dropped the ball there. I knew I had told them who our doctor was. Somehow we got assigned a generic doctor that works with our insurance company. No good.

And, the pediatric orthopedic surgeon who was called into the hospital to put the cast on Dominic, it turns out, doesn’t accept our insurance. However, because he saw Dominic in the ER, they can be reimbursed by our insurance for follow-up visits. Why is American health care so complicated?

I actually know one of the physicians in the pediatric orthopedic surgeon group so I phoned him today to alert him to what was going on and that seemed to help grease the wheels a bit as well.

Throughout this process I’ve learned to be a bit more vocal in expressing my desires and to reach out to those I know for assistance.

It’s kind of like what I learned when we went through being parents for the first time: every physician and nurse seemed to have a different opinion about things. I think a parent’s opinion is often the best one, regardless of what others say.

So, after rambling on and staying up much longer than anticipated (I think feeling tired will be a constant state of being for the next several weeks), I’ll end my post with a few photos.

Here are some cute gingerbread men the Nelson’s brought over for Dominic (note the icing in the shape of a cast).

And here’s Dominic lounging in his place of honor in the family room.

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