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Cutest Cub Scout Ever

Oh my goodness. It is so rare that we see this side of Apollo’s personality. A cheeky toddler. A big, uninhibited smile, radiating joy.

He has struggled so much his whole life. And most of that was with doctors saying he was fine…trying this, try that. Wait, wait, wait. We hope that least now that we know what we’re up against, things will improve. 

After the boys crossed over, Apollo came running to me saying, “Me now? Me now? Me now?

So Chuck helped Apollo salute as he stood on the bridge. It’s hard to know who was more proud…Chuck or Apollo. After saluting, Apollo bravely marched down the other side of the bridge…Only to go right back (this time by himself) and do it again. Over and over, Apollo crossed the bridge. Each time pausing to let his “audience” appreciate his achievement.

Can you believe how chunky he is getting?!

You wouldn’t know it from the photos, but Apollo had an infection brewing in his g-tube. He was fussy most of Sunday and Monday…he had a bit of respite on Tuesday at the park and then at the Crossover. By the time we headed home though he was miserable. And his site looked terrible. Red and oozy. The skin around the area was mushy. The tube was sticking out too far. We ended up in the ER for his infection…and were sent home with antibiotics again. Why the ER? There are no pediatric GI doctors in our town, so when there is something urgent, after hours, we have to head there. Not a great system.

Overall, in between crises, I’m thrilled with the g-tube. He is finally getting enough calories. He is growing. On his good days he now has energy to run and play! This fall and winter he became less and less active, until he spent most of his days sitting. Not sitting quietly and contentedly, that’s not his style, but he was too tired to run around like the toddler he is. It happened so slowly it took me a while to realize it was happening at all.

Now he is so very much more relaxed about food. He eats a little here and there all day long like he did before, but is no longer frantic and upset at mealtimes. His body knows it’s not starving anymore.

On the down side, there is always something with his g-tube at this point. Either it’s leaking, or a port pops open. Or the site is oozy or he has granulation tissue. Or it’s infected. He’s been struggling with diarrhea for weeks now. Perhaps caused by the first round of antibiotics. Or perhaps from too much formula being pumped into his system at once. Who knows?

I have successfully night-weaned Apollo. It’s been 2.5 weeks now. He calls nursing “nurse honey” (it’s a long story). He has learned he doesn’t “nurse honey at night-nights”. He’s not happy about it, but he has learned to get back to sleep without nursing. Step one in eventually sleeping through the night, I hope. Never in my wildest dreams did I ever imagine I’d have a 23  month old still nursing at night and not sleeping through. In the past we’ve managed to help even our most difficult babies sleep through the night.

Apollo is teaching us new lessons all the time.

17 Comments

  1. Angie

    He looks so good. So glad he and you are getting some benefits from all the trauma. Will be praying for more healing, more sleep, and more cheeky, adorable toddler fun.

  2. Peg

    Wow! He looks so much better than before. When I saw his picture, I wasn’t sure it was him and had to scroll down to see that it was. For what it’s worth, I think the picture I’ll remember the most was right after his surgery, when he was still unconscious, Chuck was holding his little hand in his. Very poignant.

    • bakersdozenandapolloxiv

      Peg, thanks. Yes, I can’t get over how good his color is…he just looks…healthy in these photos.

  3. Jo

    Oh he looks so good! Glad he is gaining weight and having fun being a normal toddler. Sorry about the infection, are you able to have him take probiotics? I know that does help with the diarrhea issue. I hope that the tube clears up and does well full-time soon, as that is uncomfortable for him.

  4. cecily spencer

    something that helped when my daughter’s g tube site kept getting infected was to take a q tip and wash around the site with a hospital grade antibacterial soap we would do it three times then wipe off the soap with a wet Q tip and tape a sterile gauze pad over it when it wasn’t in use. You could also try betadine but it is a little hard on the skin.

  5. Mommaofmany

    My son has chronic kidney disease and awe strive to keep him as healthy as possible to reduce strain on his kidneys. Infection is always a danger. When he does get sick, a clove of garlic, taken orally, clears it up FAST. I don’t know how you could get it into Apollo, or if a high quality powdered garlic would be as effective, but it’s really worth researching. Garlic is a powerful tool to keep people healthy.

    Powdered probiotics would be easy for him to consume (they are sweet and can be sprinkled on food) and help a lot, too. Antibiotics kill all the body’s bacteria, bad and good. Those good ones are essential to staying healthy long term. You have to build them up after a round of antibiotics. Research fermented foods, gut health and good bacteria to learn lots more about it.

  6. Kat

    So cute! Renee, I am a long time reader (since before the kids from Liberia came home) and I have so enjoyed following your family! I wanted to invite you, if you haven’t done it before, to come check out the tallships in the Sound this summer.
    I live in Texas but I am crewing on The Hawaiian Chieftain this summer. Hawaiian Chieftain and Lady Washington are working tallships that travel the West coast providing education to school kids and the public about sailing history, trade routes, and life aboard a ship. There are educational programs (you could call and see about the rates for bringing your crew, or maybe you plus another family) which are 3 hr sails or dock-side. There are also public sails by pay and dockside tours which are open by donation. I’d recommend the tours because it’s the most financially feasible option and because it provides a great chance to look around the boat and ask lots of questions. It seems like the sort of combo mini-trip with learning by doing that you guys like.
    Unfortunately Lady is getting hauled out over the summer but Chieftain will be in Bellingham July 20-24 and around the rest of the Sound for most of July/August. I will be rejoining the crew in Bellingham on the evening of the 23rd, so I wouldn’t be there if you came in Bellingham. I would love to meet you and all you kiddos, but more that than I’d love to know that you came, even if I missed you, and share sailing, and sail history, with your family.
    Check out historicalseaport.org for the boats’ schedule and please don’t hesitate to email me if you have any questions.

  7. Angie

    He is so cute. If your kids enjoy the outdoors and animals they, and anyone else on here, might enjoy looking at our Facebook page. Go to Critter Junction Adventures on Facebook and “like” our site and leave us a comment if you would like. We do animal and outdoor education. We have tons of pictures and our adding new fun things all the time. Your kids are great and glad your little guy is feeling better.

  8. vivian

    he is so stinkin cute!! i keep praying each day will bring him closer to the normal toddler … you know the kind where they drive you nuts …. funny nuts ha ha!!

  9. Anna

    He looks so good!
    Could you please share with me how you get your babies to sleep? My 3rd is 9 months. His sleep is terrible. He can nurse literally all night long and screams bloody murder if I take him off. I’m frustrated and exhausted. He will accept no substitute, no paci, bottle, or thumb. Naptime is no better. Hubby works nights so he is sleeping during the day and baby is still in our room. (No other option there, it’s close quarters.) I feel bad because he is teething, about to get his first tooth/teeth. Nursing obviously makes him more comfortable. I don’t want to take that away but I need to get things done and can’t spend hours every day trying to nurse him to sleep and get him to stay asleep.

  10. jessi

    Oh this is the biggest smile I’ve seen on his handsome face ever!!!he looks so like his big brothers now he is beefing up!!!there will be so many issues with the tube considering he is active and I’m sure it can’t be easy keeping it uninfected but your all doing so well to go through all you have to get to this point.he’s amazing.

  11. Elizabeth

    That is AWESOME! (using the world quite properly!) I’m so very relieved for you. I just can’t wait till you and he consistently get more sleep. After being deprived for so long (for Apollo all his life) you’ll both probably feel like you could fly!!

  12. Elizabeth

    Whoops, my comment above was supposed to go on the post announcing him sleeping thru the night. Cute pics on this post!

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