A lot changes in three weeks.
On Monday the 5th, I was having irregular contractions that weren't quite painful enough to be the real thing. For some reason, I decided to go get monitored at the Women's Clinic here, and my blood pressure was too high, so the doctor sent me to the hospital to get some blood work done and check for pre-eclampsia.
My mom and I went to the hospital. They monitored me, took my blood pressure, took bodily fluids of various sorts, etc. Then they decided to strip my membranes and send me home.
For those who don't know these things, stripping membranes is roughly like having one's tonsils removed via the cervix. (sorry to those who will have nightmares for the next month...)
This was around 5pm. We drove back to Modiin, picking up Yaakov on the way. We went to my sister's house, where Kinneret was, spent a little time with her, and went home. Yaakov made me dinner, and then it was time to head back to the hospital. It was a bit after 8 when my mom picked me up.
Labor was super-intense. We got to the hospital around 9, and I asked for an epidural. The baby was born at 9:40, before the anesthesiologist got anywhere near me. So once again, despite my best intentions, I had a natural childbirth.
To those who think that's a wonderful thing, I have one thing to say: OW! Giving birth hurts, dammit!
In other news. we named the baby Ephraim Yehoshua. Ephraim is for the verse "Haben yakir li Ephraim" - the son Ephraim is dear to me. Yehoshua is Joshua - the man who led the Jewish people in the conquest of Canaan. Remember the walls of Jericho? That was Yehoshua! So, here we are, looking for a true leader for the Jewish people... We're working on it right here at chez triLcat.
Kinneret was sick the week Ephraim was born, and to top it off, Poofy got into a fight with another dog on Shabbat. They fought right in the stairs of our building - I couldn't even be angry at the other owners for unleashing him - it's indoors... anyway, he couldn't walk, so I took him to the vet.
That was a really fun experience. We packed the two kids into the double stroller, and then we took a broken stroller that Yaakov is planning to take the wheels from and put Poofy in it. We wheeled our two strollers to the vet's house. Thank G-d (and Moti Dror, on Almogan, phone # available on request), the vet was home. He came out despite being in the middle of his morning coffee on a Saturday morning. He looked Poofy over, listened to my story, and gave Poofy a shot of steriods. He told me to take him home and keep him still and bring him back after Shabbat.
The whole afternoon, I spent worrying about Poofy, especially worried that he wouldn't be able to walk anymore and we couldn't keep him if he couldn't stand up by himself. Needless to say, there was much crying. After Shabbos, the vet told me that he expected Poofy to continue healing and that I should give him steriods for the next three days. He gave Poofy another shot, and gave me the rest in pills so I could give him them at home.
The bottom line is that Poofy can walk and run just fine now, but his jumping seems to have been permanently damaged. He can jump onto furniture, but it seems to be harder for him. The upside is that I doubt that he'll be able to get onto the dining room table anymore. On the other hand, I really miss his excited bouncing, and it's sad to watch him trying to analyze the jump before he gets up on a bed when it used to be completely effortless before. I guess it was inevitable. He's ten years old. He was going to slow down at some point. I just wish it hadn't been such a drastic and dramatic event :(
After this, Kinneret was in daycare for about a week, and then she got sick again. She was home for four days this week. That was challenging, to say the least. The doctor wasn't sure if it was herpes (which she'd been exposed to) or hand, foot, and mouth disease. Since herpes is super-dangerous for a child Ephraim's age, I had to keep her from touching him. That was, needless to say, challenging. Fortunately, it turned out to be hand, foot, and mouth disease, which is a much friendlier virus. It's one of those one-shot deals, as opposed to herpes which hangs around forever.
Today, she's finally back at daycare, and I'm trying to get control of the dish situation. I'm so grateful that we have dishwashers! Today feels so relaxed with just one baby who refuses to be put down. Fortunately, I have one of those wrap-up-baby things that you can use to attach a baby to the mommy. Kinneret used to love it, and Ephraim loves it too. I don't have a picture of Ephraim in it, but I'll give you a picture of Kinneret...
So, now I think I've caught up for the past three weeks. Well, pretty much. I'll post some more when I have the energy.