On Friday afternoon, Don brought the boys home and took Gali and Oz to the park. When they got back from the park, and came into the lounge room, Oz cried like he was in pain. It was a distressed cry so we checked him all over thinking something had happened to him, bee sting/cut/fall etc. We checked his whole body and he was rubbing his feet together, so I checked his feet, rotated ankles, bent toes, knees hips etc. He cried like he does when I change his nappy - annoyance but not in pain. He was grizzling on and off that night but just like he was tired, or teething or gassy. All Saturday he was normal but occasionally he would cry again briefly, but then stop and be totally calm again. I became convinced it was gas, because he had conjunctivitis, because he had a cough, because he had a sore throat, because other kids with the flu like symptoms developed gastro, because he was teething, because he ate peas and butter beans for the first time ever and that made him gassy, he was pulling on his ear and it was hot so we thought ear infection....the way that a parent hunts for reasons. We gave him more warm showers than usual trying to get gas out, we gave him warm water with dilute lemon and ginger tea to soothe his throat, we gave him eye drops to clear up his eyes and ease the pain of the infection.
Saturday Nano had friends over from school, we cleaned the house a little the kids came over, they all played Oz crawled around - it was all pretty normal.
Sunday day we took the boys into the city. Don took Nano and Fox to a film festival for children at the Opera House and I took Gali and Oz to the Powerhouse. I took the double pram and Oz cried when I put him in and pulled his ugg boots on, but again calmed down when the pram moved. He seemed to cry whenever the pram stopped but that is pretty typical for him as he is never in the pram much. Anyway we spent the day slowly checking things out, Oz sat on the floor and played but didn't crawl, I figured he was tired from being sick. He happily went on the outdoor play equipment and went into the Mai-Tai then back to the pram a few times. He grizzled but no more than usual and he ate really well.
When we got home that night, Poppy came over to use the thermomix, Flynn came too and Flynn is going through the normal developmental biting stuff. He has bitten Oz once or twice now, so Oz is a little cautious around him. Oz cruised along the sofa and hid in the corner crying and pointing at Flynn, it was sad and a bit cute. About 40 mins later, I was feeding Oz with Poppy beside me and I bumped OZ's foot and he cried, right away I knew it was his foot that was sore, so I stripped him down and saw his foot was bruised and swollen. When I put him down, he wouldn't put weight on it and he was crawling with the foot held up. His ankle was much bigger than the other one, and I said I would take him to hospital right away. The crying and grizzly behavior over the past few days made sense right away so hospital was it right away.
We asked Poppy to stay with the kids for an hour and went to emergency. At this point it was 9ish and we told Poppy Don would come back at 10pm so she could take her baby home. From there we saw the triage nurse, then got to wait until ED staff did an examination, then we went to Xray and then back to emergency waiting room (cutting this down). The Dr/Nurse came and spoke to us and she was incredibly lovely and broke the news to us with a huge amount of empathy, that Oz did actually have a fracture. We didn't know where and I still confused fracture with total break, so we were floored and horrified. We got sent to the rooms behind emergency, called Poppy and let her know we were late.
We went to the clinic behind the emergency and they sent us to Xray which was exceptionally distressing for Oz. After the Xray we got a backslab plaster and waited for the Xray results. A Dr came to see us, asked us more questions about how the bone broke, at this point she told us two bones were broken. She then told us that we'd have to stay in the hospital over night because the Child Protection Unit would want to investigate the break. A friend of mine had gone through something similar so this was not unexpected news, but that we were told to stay over night was confronting. We refused, at this point it was 3am and we had to get home to get the boys to school and let poor Poppy go home, so we went home.
Monday morning the kids went to school, and my FIL visited and explained expected hospital procedure. He explained that the CPU would (Child Protection Unit) most likely order a Bone Survey and a Skeletal Survey, which are two tests used to determine if there are signs of other abuse, or any immediately visible bone problems.
To hear that there would be invasive tests done just to see if we were abusive was horrifying and I said I would refuse any test that was not specifically in the interest of Oz's treatment. My FIL right away told me that if I refuse, I would lose custody whilst the test were done. That the Health Minister had unreasonable (my opinion) powers and guidelines for the hospital and I messed with that at my own risk. At which point I felt...like exactly how you imagine YOU would feel. Your child is going to be forced to undergo tests to see if you are an abusive monster.
At 10:25 that same morning, we got a call from the CPU (Child Protection Unit) asking if we could meet up and chat. I told them we'd be there in 30 mins and we were. We had an interview with a social worker, a student social worker and a hospital registrar and they interviewed us on everything about our life, literally almost -everything-. I told them I'd homebirthed, and they were HAPPY and clucky about it, they said about 10 different things about how beautiful that was. I told them we didn't vaccinate because of concerns and Fox being overdosed and that we would reconsider our position after Oz is one, and they dismissed my explanation as irrelevant, because they weren't focused on that. What they did focus really intently on was our day to day routine, and how we think the accident happened.
The interview continued for a about 2 hours, the staff took a quick break to discuss things and came back in. They put numbing cream on Oz and we were told to go and get a blood test after some lunch, then come back and meet with the head of the CPU who is a pediatrician and who would decide what tests she wanted to go ahead with. We hoped they'd take us to see the fracture clinic and bandage him and discuss the Xrays they took in emergency.
After a bit of a shellshocked lunch We went to Pathology for tests where the woman at the desk announced loudly "Oh you are from Child Protection, yeah - just sit down." Great. The blood test went really really badly, Oz remembered the people who bandaged his leg, who examined him and he was already terrified of strange people. To then be held down and poked with needles was awful. The pathology staff said the staff had ordered a lot of tests, and so a lot of blood would be required. I was actually sobbing the whole time at this point because Oz was screaming in absolute terror.
After the blood test we had to go back and wait for the meeting with Susan someone. She met us and looked at Oz naked, and then made him go outside in the sun to check his eyes, and then checked Don's eyes and my eyes. I forgot to ask what it was about. When we got back to the office she said she felt it was nessecary to do the Skeletal Survey and the Bone Survey. In my mind, this was now associated with the suspicion of child abuse, so I was horrified and afraid for Oz. I expressed all my concerns about radiation and danger to his health. She said it had to be done. She also explained the benefit to Oz, was that it would rule out brittle bones, or bone disorders that might have caused the fracture. That made it a tiny bit better, but still the consequences to his health were troubling.
They arranged for all the tests to be done the next day. 9am, 3pm and an interview with them again at 4:30pm.
9am - The Bone Survey is where a radioactive dye is injected into the veins, and photos are taken right away as they dye goes into the soft tissue. It shows if there are infections. An hour later the shots are repeated, but this time each photo is 3 minutes long and the dye now coats the bones showing any small fractures, blood flow to the bone, healed fractures, bone bruising and bone function excluding metabolic disorders.
This test went pretty well, Oz was still terrified of people and again Don and I had to pin him down whilst he was hysterical and they injected the dye into his veins. They also got more blood from him at this point too because his veins stopped giving blood the day before.
The first photos they took for the soft tissue, they strapped him down with velcro straps and held his head with their hands. Because of his distress, they decided to sedate him an hour later for the 3 minute shots because he had to be perfectly still for them. So they put him under a light sedation and did the other shots. During this time, and since the night before, Don had been in HUGE pain with an abdominal thing, and he wasn't coping with the stress and the pain so I got Mama (my Grandma) to come up and be with me whilst Don went to see a Dr. By this time it was 12:15, even though the test started at 9-9:30, with Oz's distress it took this long, when he woke up he said "duce duce duce" - it was very cute :) duce = juice = water, his mouth was dry and he drank like crazy. We went and had lunch, tea and killed time till 3pm.
3pm - The Skeletal Survey is a collection of full body Xrays; two skull, two chest, hips, each arm, each hand, each leg, each foot so a total of 13 Xrays, this is on top of the two he had the other night meaning 15 Xrays on one small body. They had to redo two meaning 17 xrays.
Don was back and had pain killers at this point and Mama was with us in the waiting room. This was the WORST tests. We managed to keep Oz asleep for the first skull xray, and I was stressing out about the radiation trying to cover him with lead in every shot. The tech was pretty dismissive of my feelings and just said "The Dr's order this, we have to do it". I comforted and cuddled Oz between every shot which made the process take a full hour and 20 mins.
4:30 - Interview again. This time Mama was with me, the head of the unit was there, the registrar and the social worker. They were all really nice as usual but the conversation was just awful, and after a day of tests it was too hard. They said that Oz had the two fractures to his tibia and fibia and also a fracture in his heel bone (don't know the bone name). They said all the test came back showing he was perfect and healthy and had excellent strong dense bones, which was a huge relief, HOWEVER what this means was it was an incident of force that fractured his bones, and we still don't know what that was.
They explained that it was their job to make reports and recommendations to DOCS who would undertake their own investigation.Because we couldn't explain what happened, they couldn't offer an explanation. The only tests that hadn't come back were the Vit-D and some of the blood work, they said if his Vit-D was exceptionally low, it would explain why he was prone to a fracture and so the consideration MIGHT be less severe, but if his tests came back saying he was healthy in every way then it was likely they would recommend an investigation.
At this point I asked the head of the unit - "so what does this mean? That DOCS just come and take my baby?" and she replied very hauntingly, "No, not necessarily."
The social worker then explained that what DOCS would do, is want to investigate, current, past and future risks for ALL my children. Don and I got very upset by this and then talked about how all we had done was be honest about not being able to say WHAT happened, because whilst Oz had been in pain, he hadn't been in exceptional pain, he hadn't stopped walking on his foot or crawling or complaining when his feet were touched. We pointed out that had we just lied or come in with some story about what happened, that everything would be OK. Mama spoke with some emotion about her fears and how we were exceptionally good parents <3 which was really sweet of her.
We left the hospital feeling like a ten tonne truck had hit us. When I got home my family were there and we all had dinner together. It was very hard to sleep.
I found an amazing herbal apocracthy online who sell and phenomenal Bone Flesh and Cartlige healing tonic and so I ordered it, and it made me feel better to be doing something proactive about his care that didn't involve radiation....
Weds after almost no sleep, we went to Nano and Fox's school open day which Nano had begged and begged for us to attend, so I felt like a GOOD mother for not putting my other commitments ahead of him and it was really nice. Some friends kids spoke on stage and all the kids were cute and it was just all round a good day.
Weds evening we became concerned that Oz's cast had slipped, D's dad checked it and said it was OK, but by the morning his leg had slipped and twisted in the cast very badly and it was causing him pain, so today Poppy and I went back to the hospital and got it replastered. The Nurse Practioner 'Marty' was AMAZING. The cast came off, Oz wiggled his feet and kicked his legs happily and for the first time was OK with a stranger being near him. Marty also showed me the Xrays and talked me through them.
He knew we were in the CPU and without addressing it directly he was really great about it and said he couldn't see the heel fracture, that the report didn't say there was one - just bone bruising. He said the front fracture was obvious, the back one was not possible for me to see. He said in 12 months it would be impossible to see any evidence of the fracture, that it was exceptionally tiny, that his bones are still amazingly strong and it's not a reflection on his health. This afternoon was the first time I felt comforted and reassured by the staff and their knowledge of the situation.
So we got home early evening and that is what we are up to.
On Tuesday we go back to see the Orthopedic clinic where the final blood tests will be looked at, depending on the results of those, more blood work might be done to rule out metabolic disorders. After that clinic we go back to the CPU for another conversation. I think we'll find out there if we are being referred to DOCS.
I don't know anything else but I do know that if we seem to be overly distressed or not coping that the recommendation of Oz going into the care of a Grandparent is likely. But we aren't in that much distress, Tuesday was the WORST day, and then we just got busy again with the boys. We aren't falling apart, just really tired and worried but feeling better now after speaking to Marty and seeing the Xrays.
So that is absolutely everything that has happened. I wanted to explain properly. On Tues, is the next bit and I am really optimistic :)
I have to say that having the few of you who know about this write to me made just the biggest difference. More than bringing me meals or watching the kids which you all offered and I am so grateful for, I felt like an utterly shite mother and it made a difference to know that some people liked me and care about my kids. Might seem silly but all the SMS were hugely important. <3 <3 <3 <3
Also please consider writing.
Jill from Keyboard Revolutionary wrote about a new term that she recently came across— “Pit to distress.”
“Pit to distress.” How have I not heard about this? Apparently it’s quite en vogue in many hospitals these days. Googling the term brings up a number of pages discussing the practice, which entails administering the highest possible dosage of Pitocin in order to deliberately distress the fetus, so a C-section can be performed.
Yes folks, you read that right. All that Pit is not to coerce mom’s body into birthing ASAP so they can turn that moneymaking bed over, but to purposefully squeeze all the oxygen out of her baby so they can put on a concerned face and say, “Oh dear, looks like we’re heading to the OR!”
The term is found in this 2006 article in this Wall Street Journal article:
Oxytocin is a hormone released during labor that causes contractions of the uterus. The most common brand name is Pitocin, which is a synthetic version. It’s often used to speed or jump-start labor, but if the contractions become too strong and frequent, the uterus becomes “hyperstimulated,” which may cause tearing and slow the supply of blood and oxygen to the fetus. Though there are no precise statistics on its use, IHI says reviews of medical-malpractice claims show oxytocin is involved in more than 50 percent of situations leading to birth trauma.
“Pitocin is used like candy in the OB world, and that’s one of the reasons for medical and legal risk,” says Carla Provost, assistant vice president at Baystate, who notes that in many hospitals it is common practice to “pit to distress” — or use the maximum dose of Pitocin to stimulate contractions.
It’s also used on this AllNurses forum:
I agree, and call aggressive pit protocols the “pit to distress, then cut” routine. Docs who have high c/s rates and like doing them, are the same ones that like the rapid fire knock em down/drag em out pit routines.
“Pit to distress” appears on page 182 of the textbook Labor and Delivery Nursing by Michelle Murray and Gayle Huelsmann. In this example, the onus is on the nurse to defend the patient from the doctor if he or she sees the order “pit to distress” by immediately notifying the supervisor or charge nurse.
Jill asks the questions, “OBs, do you still think women are choosing not to birth at your hospitals because Ricki Lake said homebirths are cool? Do you still think we are only out for a “good experience?”
I imagine that all of us who have openly questioned the practices of obstetricians in the U.S. have been hit with the same backlash. We must be selfish, irrational and motivated by our own personal satisfaction. We’ve been indoctrinated into a subculture of natural birth zealots and want to force pain on other women or just feel mighty and superior. We fetishize vaginal birth and attach magical powers to a so-called natural entrance to the world.
Nah. It’s stuff like “pit to distress” that made me run for the nearest freestanding birth center. If I had to do it all over again, I’d stay home.
Have you heard this term before? What is your experience with “Pit to distress?”
Before you comment here, please go applaud Jill from Keyboard Revolutionary for blogging about this term and enjoy her brilliant and honest commentary.
So night two we slept in shifts, tonight I'm ok to sleep...lightly.
It's tragic having them all sick but seriously a babe this little sick is torture.
As ever singing "twinkle twinkle little star" fixed the crying fits 90% of the time, which I love (cause his name is Galileo!) and no other song will do. However for the other 7% of the time there is nothing but the worst is the last 3%...my tea cup. Gali got a sip of tea, he STOLE a sip of tea and now fixates on all cups anywhere in the room.
Oh dear, I'm too tired and sick to type more...-yawn-
almost all our sheets are in the wash, our beds are almost all bare and so we are crowded in. I've side-car'ed the cot onto our bed, we'll see how we go.
I was bored and it is pretty - it IS PRETTY DAMNIT.
Two parents on two hours sleep + two nuclear powered kids + school holidays = ....the zoo?
Mama packed a huge pull along trolley of picnic rugs and lunch and took us to the zoo. The boys go every three or so weeks, but they really love it.
The crowds were not terrible, but crowds + boys + sling made it hard to get nicer photos, but I enjoyed the day so much it didn't matter. The only thing that annoyed me was that the Tiger was out but there were so many people in the way with their reflections in the glass...grrr.
I'm sorry if these images are small/huge - I shrunk them to 'tiny' on my laptop and photo hosting site...
It seemed the zoo used the items people had tried to smuggle through customs - ie snake skins/cat pelts. It's a very clever thing to do, allow people the tactile access to the animal, but also show the animal alive and beautiful - it makes the skins/pelts very sad and the message of conservation clear to everyone very quickly.
The Koala's are pretty much the smelliest animals in the zoo, also the laziest, sleepiest, most self absorbed and disdainful of the general public. They are, just like celebrities
By far my favourite show of all the shows at the zoo is the free flight bird show. We got there an hour early, had lunch and got front row seats. It's always worth it. Seeing a Wedge Tail Eagle soar out over Sydney Harbour and then come back for meat treats 2 meters from where you sit is brilliant.
The grand finale of all the incredible native birds in all their colours is unreal too.
This beautiful bird collected money from people at the end and dropped it into a box. Felt a bit sorry for the poor thing having to use it's mouth to collect something as filthy as money - but it's for a good cause...
This is a shot of our healthy lunch provided by a Grandma who doesn't believe in spoiling children and doesn't need to be told to stop.
(We had actual food too of course - not just cake! )
This is the guilty Grandmother with my tiny 8 week old son.
The meerkats are actually really really tiny and hilariously cute. I was never a fan, but they are so opportunistic and optimistic about people feeding them whatever they have - that they perform like little clowns.
I still like the otters more, but the meerkats would be easier to steal for a pet . The enclosure is more open.
The boys ran 400 hundred steps forward and 400 hundred steps back and saw everything 4 times over by the time I caught up with them.
Also, the little details the zoo has included now are very beautiful. Little touches and accents from whatever country the animal is from.
This room and all the beams are like a paper parasol, it's beautiful.
And this was a huge carved wooden piece that was sadly in the dark...
And more animals....
The Giraffe enclosure looks out over the harbour, I guess they are putting those long necks to good use with that view!
The new Elephant enclosure is beautiful, the last time I was there it was still the horrible concrete thing with the moat. Also when I was younger one of the Elephants ate my sisters hat.
Mama also remembers when people used to ride the Elephants, 6 kids per ride!
I missed out on a few things having to pit stop for breastfeeding - I cannot walk and feed. So I missed seeing the snakes which was sad but I did get to the see the Komodo dragon who's enclosure is a bit boring...but omg, so easy to fall into!! I was horrified. How many children has this thing eaten??
Also got a sheet of glass away from some lovely freshwater crocodiles.
It's actually nesting season for the Penguins at the moment, which is fine as I really am not a fan after being attacked by a gang of them, but I got a photo for Nano.
Notice the lack of cute - but rather the shark like evil that is the fairy penguin...(jaws music)
Much more lovely were the Pelicans which Nano loved. He's a big fan of Storm Boy
Toward the end, I surrendered Galileo to his father's good baby wearing intentions...
Because near the exit is a fantastic little wadding pool that is another new addition since I visited last. I was so excited by it that I made the mistake of letting the boys wade in the water which quickly turned into totally drenched and eventually near nude children.
This is the pool....
It has fake seaweed and starfish and so on and would only come up to the ankle of most adults, but after a long walk uphill it's so nice to wade in.
Testament to Birkenstocks, an tourist couple who came by just walked right in wearing their sandals, apparently they are the 4WD of footwear
Anyway - the day ended soggy and lovely. We got the Sky Safari back up to car and came home where everyone (except sick Mummy) fell fast asleep.
so cute. precious baby.
Fox - "Monsters did it."
Don - "Stop telling lies"
Fox - "MONSTERS!" Fist waving. (His pronounciation of 'monsters' is more like Monshtahs)
I love my Fox. He is so wild and feral right now.
He brought us a tin of biscuits this morning in bed, drop it on us and announced -
I'm also enjoying Orlando's use of the word "Flummoxed"
"Whoa I'm flummoxed, why is that cobra so aggressive!?"
It's a vocab few 4 year olds have, with the enthusiasm (and direct influence) of Steve Irwin. But of course Nano calls him "Steven" - so formal.
Thank a Feminist
I don't know the original source, but this is being circulated on another forum I belong to:
If you are a woman voter, thank a feminist.
If your doctor is a woman, thank a feminist.
If you open the help-wanted section of any U.S. paper and see job listings
classified by occupation rather than "help wanted - male" and "help wanted -
female", thank a feminist.
If your depression is taken seriously rather than considered a byproduct of
having a uterus, thank a feminist.
If, in counseling, you aren't assumed to envy a man for having a penis,
thank a feminist.
If you can have birth control prescribed to you without first obtaining your
husband's written permission, thank a feminist.
If you're allowed to teach school regardless of your marital status, and
you're a woman, thank a feminist.
If you're allowed to enter an apprenticeship program, thank a feminist.
If you are told you can become something other than a nurse, a grade-school
teacher, a housewife and mother, or a nun, thank a feminist.
If you expect to be considered for admission to university programs based on
your qualifications rather than your gender, thank a feminist.
If you expect your qualifications for admission to educational programs to
be considered equally, rather than after every male applicant has been
admitted, thank a feminist.
If you have ever heard of the crime of spousal rape, and know that there's a
law against it, thank a feminist.
If you've heard of the crime of domestic violence, and know that it's
illegal, thank a feminist.
If you can drive, thank a feminist.
If you expect to be paid the same wage as a man doing the same job you are,
with the same seniority and the same qualifications, thank a feminist.
If you are considered a person in your own right rather than the chattel of
a man, thank a feminist.
If you're legally permitted to own property in your own name, thank a
If you don't expect to be fired because a man "needs your job to feed his
family", thank a feminist.
If the phrase "non-traditional occupation" seems a little old-fashioned or,
better yet, you don't understand it at all, thank a feminist.
If you can look in the yellow pages of your nearest major metropolis and
find a dedicated women's clinic, thank a feminist.
If you hear terms like "firefighter", "police officer", or "postal worker"
in everday life, thank a feminist.
If the phrase "she's a woman lawyer" seems odd, thank a feminist.
If you or any person you know receives child support, thank a feminist.
If your parent received child support when you were growing up, thank a
If you aren't expected to leave the room at a party when the conversation
turns to current events and politics, thank a feminist.
If you're a grown woman and don't expect to be called "girl" when you're
fifty, thank a feminist.
Feminists brought about all of these things. Before the feminists got
involved, the reverse was true in each and every case.
Take some time, today, and thank a feminist.