I have a love/hate relationship with machines. They can be so convenient and they are often times very necessary, but they can cause so much stress in my life!
Lately, our van has been making a loud noise. I know that it needs to be taken in to be looked at, but there never seems to be enough time, plus I always seem to need my van, so going without it while it's being fixed is a hard thing to do.
Then, there is Gavin's nebulizer machine. We have to use it on him once a day. And, there are some days that I really dread turning on this machine! It is so loud and it seems to take forever to administer the medication through it! Sometimes it just doesn't want to work well, and then we have to figure out what's wrong with it. So, it can be such a pain! BUT, it has also been a life-saver for Gavin at times, and it has enabled us to stay home, instead of having to have Gavin admitted into the hospital when he isn't breathing well...so I also LOVE this machine, despite the hassels it may cause!
Yesterday this following machine gave me a ton of trouble, and wasted at least an hour of my day! This is the machine that allows us to phone in Gavin's pacemaker settings to the hospital that is 2 1/2 hours away.
This machine is totally AWESOME! I am always amazed that I can just hook it up to our phone line, turn it on, then place a paddle over Gavin's pacemaker and it can send all kinds of info to the hospital! Totally blows my mind! And, the pacemaker itself is quite amazing as well! Gavin wouldn't be alive today without it! BUT...there are days when the call-in machine doesn't work, like yesterday. And, I was in such a great mood yesterday, and then this machine totally ruined my day!
I tried to get it to work 6-7 times and it just wouldn't send the info out! It would upload the pacemaker info, but it wouldn't dial out to the hospital. I was SO FRUSTRUATED! I called the hospital. I called the Medtronic company. Then after complaining to Joel about it, he reminded me that we had recently switched to a Digital service for our phone and cable lines. So, I called the cable company and they said that they have many people who have digital service, who also need to phone in pacemaker readings, and it works fine for them. (Which is NOT true, according to Medtronic.) So, I called the hospital again and they said that this machine doesn't work with a digital system, and none of their machines will. So, I called Medtronic and they said that we can pay $10 a month for a cellular service that connects to the machine and then it would work. They said that another cable company (AT&T) has a system that works with the machine, but that the company we have (Comcast) doesn't. So, I considered switching to AT&T, but then I remembered that they don't have service in our area yet! UGH!
So, for now I guess we pay $10 a month. The hospital said that we could use someone else's phone line to call in the monthly readings, but then we would have to pack Gavin and the machine up to go out and do it.....and I already have a hard enough time remembering to call in the reading and fitting it into our shedule! Plus, if there were an emergency, like if Gavin was short of breath or his heart rate was too low or sporadic, then we wouldn't be able to do an emergency call in reading, so $10 per month is worth it to me!
Then there is Gavin's feeding pump machine. This one is another life-saver! Gavin can't eat by mouth, so he NEEDS this machine! I love it, because it feeds my son, keeps him hydrated and alive.....BUT, anyone who has one of these machines will tell you what a pain it can be! The lines get occluded so often, and then the machine beeps! The bag tips over and then the line empties, and then the machine beeps! The pump senses that the bag is empty...even though it IS NOT empty, and then the machine beeps! The machine also seems to have a mind of it's own somedays, because absolutely NOTHING can be wrong with it and it BEEPS...BEEPS...BEEPS! About drives me crazy! (Of course, it started beeping while typing this post!) So, I love this machine, but I also hate it!
The following picture is of Gavin's G-tube.....another life-saver! This is where we hook up the feeding tube to Gavin's stomach. It is an awesome invention.....But, of course it's like a machine, in that it can cause troubles as well. It sometimes gets twisted and comes off, which makes a nice mess for me and Gavin! And, it can get pulled out if it's pulled on with any force.....Gavin likes to get a hold of it many times in a day, but thankfully it's only gotten pulled out a few times.
FYI: If you want to know where Gavin's pacemaker is, look at this picture and you will see a diagonal scar on the left side of his abdomen. The pacemaker is inserted just under that scar. A pacemaker usually is placed into a person's chest, but with a baby, they put it in the abdomen. You can also see many other scars that Gavin has accumulated over the years. He has been such a trooper!
Here is a picture that I found when I was looking for the pictures above. I took these about 2 1/2 years ago. Look at Gavin around this time. He was so chunky back then! But, WAY CUTE, if you ask me!
And finally, I love my computer, but I think I hate it just as much! I love that I have been able to meet some wonderful people, and to form a support system that I wouldn't have otherwise. I love the ability to keep in touch with others and look up info quickly, but it is SO SLOW and takes so much patience from me.....Patience that I can't afford to lose, since it seems I'm constantly spending mine on 4 boys each day! :)
Machines.....Can't live with them, Can't live without them!.....Truly a love/hate relationship!
"To everything there is a season, A time for every purpose under heaven:
A time to be born, And a time to die; A time to plant, And a time to pluck what is planted; A time to kill, And a time to heal; A time to break down, And a time to build up; A time to weep, And a time to laugh; A time to mourn, And a time to dance;
A time to cast away stones, And a time to gather stones; A time to embrace, And a time to refrain from embracing; A time to gain, And a time to lose; A time to keep,
And a time to throw away; A time to tear, And a time to sew; A time to keep silence,
And a time to speak; A time to LOVE, And a time to HATE; A time of war, And a time of peace." Ecclesiastes 3:1-8