Cassie Shepherd

December 14, 2015

Elf On The Shelf: Day 14

Fifteen days ago I didn't understand how so many parents could forget to move their Elf. Eating my words, here. I totally get it now. Life gets busy and sometimes moving Elf at midnight is the last thing I am thinking about. (The other night, we were up until 1 AM trying to decide on a freaking shower faucet.)

But, this was one I didn't want to forget doing. Emily has another eye doctor appointment coming up tomorrow and maybe this little set up is a coping method for me as much as I am hoping it'll be for her. If you haven't followed her story up until now, you can start here. But, real briefly, Emily had lazy eye surgery in July. The surgery was a success...until it wasn't anymore. About eight weeks after the surgery, her lazy eye came back. In fact, it came back just days after her twin sister, Addie, had the same surgery. (Addie's lazy eye appeared exactly three months to the day that Emily's had appeared. Sometimes their synchronization is eery.)

During that time we'd been dealing with a lot of post-trauma stress from Emily. Now that I look back, I can confidently say Emily, be it because of personality or the actual experience, suffered emotionally far more than Addie. Addie exhibited some of the PSTD, but in comparison to Emily, she was much easier to work through everything with. Or, maybe, Addie recovered quicker because she saw Emily go through it?

For the last five weeks we've been trying glasses. She maybe wears them 30-40 minutes in the morning right after she wakes up. In the last two weeks she's been complaining her eye hurts so it's been good I can offer the glasses. And just recently, once they're off, they're off for the rest of the day. It's a rarity I can get them back on later in the afternoon. It seems like we've regressed a little here.

Our appointment tomorrow is actually a follow up for Addie, but, at this point, I am not at all worried about her. Okay, I lied. I take that back. There is about a 5% doubt I am worried only because the other day I *thought* I saw Addie's previous lazy eye drop a little, but I could just be paranoid. I haven't really noticed it since. This is about the same time frame Emily's started to weaken again so I am on high alert.

But, I am anxious because I keep thinking the doctor is going to tell us tomorrow that Emily needs another surgery. In my opinion, her lazy eye looks worse than before the first surgery. We acted as quickly as we could last go around and this time feels like we're dragging because of the glasses. The doctor told me the best case scenario was that the glasses would resolve the lazy eye, but, I can already tell you, that isn't going to happen. It's pretty bad.

In fact, one of the things I am going to discuss tomorrow is if there is anyway the weaknesses in her eye muscles could be related to her chronic wheeze. The two did appear at the same time. We discussed it once with another doctor, but it was way before her wheeze was diagnosed as "chronic." And we were only a few weeks in. It might be a long-shot, but I am going to run it by her again.

If I were to guess, Emily is going to need another surgery and then we'll just start right off the bat with glasses again to try to prevent another weakness in the muscles, but I am not entirely sure. I'll be surprised if she tells us to keep trying the glasses right now. But, it's definitely a possibility.

Considering Emily had such a hard time with recovery last time, I am just really dreading another round with her. I get sick just thinking about it. What if we need the surgery? What if we don't? What if it's right in the middle of our move? What if... I shouldn't dwell on it until we know for sure so I keep trying to place my feelings in the back of my mind. 

That brings us to today's Elf. Emily (of course, ha!) was the first to find the set up and she was totally in love and enthusiastic about it all. Santa and Halo the Angel are actually part of my 1000+ TY Beanie Baby collection that I've had stored in a basement since I was 12. (Yes, you read that right, over 1000. And I still have them all.) I totally rotate the stuffed animals for the girls and luckily these two buddies were stored right on top of the first box I looked in last night. Perfect. Emily gravitated toward Santa, walking him around "Ho! Ho! Ho! Merrrrr Christmas!" Addie loved the angel so it worked out well (I always worry they'll want the same item when I have two different toys.)

Working with the doctor's kit is something the Child Life Specialist recommend to help the girls work through their emotions. It's been a success! Emily had a major meltdown when we took her into the cardiologist, but, honestly, once the doctor came in and showed her his stethoscope she was a totally different person. Attentive and interested. No crying. Doctor Maisy has also become one of her favorite books. I've tried to find some more related to the eye/glasses, but haven't had much luck, so if you know of any, let me know. 

Check back for an update on tomorrow's appointment. 

To see everything our Elf has done: Elf On The Shelf | Toddler Ideas

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