Monday, September 30, 2013

A Birth Story

This birth story started weeks ago- for me, anyhow.  Having had a surprise/emergency C-Section with one of the twins last delivery, I knew going into this pregnancy that there would be choices to be made on the method of delivery.  My doctor has told me for years that I would be a good candidate for a VBAC.  I was glad to hear that, as that was my preferred option.  I knew there were risks involved in having a VBAC, but wasn't fully aware of all of the requirements in order to have one.  I went into this pregnancy, and about 5 months or so into it, thinking that a VBAC was going to be totally possible and quite simple for me.  I've had 3 babies the "normal" way- my body knows how to do it.  So when I found out late in my pregnancy just how many things had to happen in order for a VBAC to even be a possibility, I started to worry.  

I learned that I cannot be induced- no methods that had worked in my past deliveries would be allowed: no pitocin, no medicine to help dilate/thin my cervix, nothing.  I had to go into active labor on my own, which has never really happened for me.  I don't dilate early, EVER (even with twins) and the only "help" my doctor could give me (stripping my membranes) would require me to dilate on my own before delivery.  I knew my chances were not likely, but it could happen, right??  I was discouraged and extremely hopeful, all at the same time.

C-sections are not bad.  I am a firm believer in getting a baby into this world in the safest possible way, and if the best way to accomplish healthy baby/healthy mama is by C-Section, great.  But my last (and only) experience with a C-section was, to be honest, awful.  I hated everything about it.  I couldn't see my baby be born, I was strapped to a table, unable to move and couldn't even feel my arms.  I didn't feel safe to hold the twins for hours after they were born because my arms and hands were so numb (and later itchy).  I couldn't sit upright in bed for at least 12 hours after delivery because doing so made me extremely nauseous.  I wasn't allowed to eat for almost 24 hours afterwards.  I was in an incredible amount of pain- more so than anything I've ever experienced, and I couldn't stay on top of it at the hospital.  I went home in lots of pain and experienced horrible side effects from the pain killers I was on.  I was on pain killers much, much longer than any of my other deliveries.  I hate being dependent on anything, especially pain killers.  Taking any of the narcotics was brutal- I needed them to even function, but they made me so dizzy and loopy and tired that I wasn't of much use anyway.  There are more restrictions on C-sections- no lifting of anything besides baby for 6 weeks (including lifting or really even holding kids, which is hard with young children) and no driving.  I really just hated it and never wanted to do it again.  I was Team VBAC for sure.

Up until the last 2 months or so, I was pretty gung-ho about the VBAC happening.  It works well for woman all the time.  Being a "great candidate", it could easily work well for me too!  But as the end got closer and closer, I started thinking (and by thinking, I mean worrying) about the two methods I had to choose from and the pros and cons of each.  A VBAC has some very scary risks- a small chance (about 1%) of the uterus rupturing.  The chance of it happening is so low, but as my doctor told me, it's like a car accident.  It happens so fast- everything is going along great, and then in a split second it all changes.  The uterus starts to erupt and the baby goes into distress extremely quickly, and there is no way to prevent it.  Baby and mom's health and lives are in jeopardy.  The thought that there was no way to prevent that was not a good feeling.

But on the other hand, the thought of another C-section was not a pleasing thought either.  I know how I recover from both types of deliveries and I much prefer the recovery of a "normal" delivery- I do those quite well.  I feel pretty well and recover quite quickly.  C-sections?  Not so much.

What I was really hoping was that as it got closer, I would just know what to do.  Was I really wishing that the heavens would just open and a voice would tell me exactly what to do?  Absolutely.  As the last month came upon us, I started praying very fervently that I would know what to do.  I expressed my feelings on wanting a VBAC as my preferred delivery option, and then waited for weeks to feel that it was the right option.  I never felt one way or the other.  I was getting very discouraged and didn't know what to do.  I really didn't want to do a VBAC and have something go horribly wrong.  Even if baby made it through ok, but I ended up with a hysterectomy at 29, that wasn't good either.  And I definitely didn't want to have my doctor let me be overdue by a week or two, waiting to see if my body would go into labor on its own, only to find out that it wasn't going to happen and have to get a C-section one or two weeks after my due date (misery!) But I just really, really didn't want a c-section.

The last 2 weeks of my pregnancy, I was having at least one doctor appointment a week, if not two.  My doctor was constantly checking me for any progression and I never had any.  I really wasn't surprised, at all, but I have to admit I was praying for a miracle- the miracle of my body going into labor on its own, for the first time.  A few weeks before my due date, and after discussing all of the options with my doctor, we decided to set a c-section date, just in case.  My doctor said it would be wise to get it on the calendar because it would be near impossible to schedule one on short notice later in the game.  He assured me that I could cancel it at any time.  I was glad to have that date on the calendar- I was hoping before it came around to know for sure what I (we) wanted to do.

Just 2 nights before my scheduled C-section, I was completely distraught.  I had spent weeks worrying, wondering, praying and pretty much going crazy about what to do.  I really just wanted to do what I was supposed to do and I wanted to know for sure which way was the "right" way for us.  As Ben and I climbed into bed that night, I spilled all my worries to him.  I was desperately wanting an answer and was not getting one.  Lucky for me, I have an extremely wise and in-tune husband.  We spent well over an hour talking everything through.  Ben helped me realize that my lack of an answer was probably an answer in itself.  I had been praying to know if I should do a VBAC and never felt great about it.  But I was conflicted, as I didn't feel great about the C-section.  Ben helped me realize, again, that perhaps I didn't feel good about it because it was for reasons that weren't the most important.  He understood that I hated my last C-section, which is the reason I didn't want one, but that perhaps a C-section was still the answer because it was the safest way for me to deliver our sweet baby, and not just because of the things I'd have to go through.  After a physically, emotionally and spiritually exhausting conversation, we ended our night on the decision of proceeding forward with a C-section and surprisingly, I felt very calm and ok with that.  I woke up the next morning still feeling ok about it.  A C-section was not what I had wanted, but I knew it was going to be ok and that was the best option for us.   I had a doctor's appointment that morning and when I found out that I hadn't progressed at all, I had our answer confirmed again.  The C-section scheduled for the next morning was a go.  And to be honest, it was so nice knowing that I had less than 24 hours left of being pregnant!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013
Delivery Day! (D-Day)

We had to check in at the hospital (Valley Medical Center- same hospital Chloe was born at!) bright and early at 6:00 a.m.

Last shots of my LARGE pregnant belly- 39.5 weeks

Donning the ever flattering hospital gown.  One size fits all, for sure!

And then we... waited.  And waited.  And waited.  No one even came into our room until at least 7:30 a.m.  Ben and I both said that we could have spent this extra time at home in bed!

The TV monitor welcomed us warmly, though!  We spent our down time watching a movie on Netflix.

Finally someone came back and got an IV going in me (first try, as usual, was unsuccessful.  I have a nice bruise to remember that by).  I had to have a whole bag of fluid pumped into me prior to surgery.  With my bladder already being the size of a pea, that was not pleasant.  I was using the bathroom every 5 minutes for the last hour.

Finally, around 9:00, it was go time.  Ben got dressed in his Operating Room gear- as someone described it, it looked like he was ready for blast off!

We headed down to the OR after that.  Ben had to wait outside while I got my spinal block.  He has always been there with me when I've received my epidurals, so I was really bummed he couldn't be in there with me.  Instead, a very sweet nurse came and stood in front of me and let me rest my head on her shoulder while she massaged my shoulders and talked me through it.  She was really great.  The spinal block took effect within seconds- it was crazy.  They warned me it would.  As soon as the anesthesiologist was done putting it in, they immediately laid me down on the table before I got too numb that I couldn't even lay down.  The surgical nurses did some more prepping on me as I got more and more numb.  Soon, I was completely numb from my chest down.  The nice part was that I could feel my hands and arms this time and didn't have to be strapped down on the table.  The bad part was that I was extremely uncomfortable.  With most of my body numb, it felt like I was laying sideways and my body's natural inclination was to shift to a more comfortable position.  I couldn't move my body at all and instead was just left to think about how uncomfortable I was.  Ben still wasn't in the room yet to distract me from all of the discomfort.

The doctor came in and got busy doing something- I couldn't only feel pressure, but wondered what he was doing with Ben not even in the room yet.  Soon I heard him say "Hey, somebody get Dad in here!"  Ben walked in a minute later and later told me that I was already cut open when he got there.  With him in the room, and knowing we were getting close to baby time, my mind was more easily distracted from my discomfort.  Almost an hour and a half past our scheduled delivery time and lots of tugging and lots of pressure later, I heard the most beautiful cry in the world.  It took my breath away and tears came to my eyes.  Our baby was here!

Olivia Morgan Andros
Born at 9:54 a.m.
Delivered by Dr. Bigler

Getting weighed and measured

9 lbs, 1 oz and 20.5 in long

She was not a happy camper for awhile.  I still hadn't seen her at this point, but could hear her sweet (albeit loud) little cry as I lay waiting on the table.

After getting her cleaned up a bit and diapered, they did her foot prints.

I finally got to see my sweet girl and the nurse took this picture of the 3 of us.  And she was still crying!  I tried to calm her as best I could with just the use of my hands, in an awkward position.
The doctor took quite awhile to sew me back up.  The weird thing this time was that there was some reflective material on the ceiling that when I looked up, I could see what was going on on the other side of my blue protective sheet.  It was grainy and far away and was very clear, but I could definitely tell that I was cut open and that everything was red and bloody.  It actually didn't bother me too much.  And I heard and could see the doctor using a suction to get rid of access blood.  Weird, weird.

I was anxious to be done- my neck and shoulders were in lots of pain.  I don't know if this is normal but it was one of the few parts of my body that I could feel and it seemed that since everything was numb, all of the pressure and weight of my body fell to my neck and shoulders.  I awkwardly tried to massage my own neck with one of my hands while I waited.

Our sweet girl!  She calmed down for a bit when she was all wrapped up and warm again.

When I first got to see her, the first thing I noticed about her were her full cheeks.  They were very soft and very kissable.  While she is a big girl, these pictures make her look much bigger than she is/was in real life.  She looked TINY in real life.

After the doctor was finished putting me back together, he came over and shook my hand and congratulated us.  Then he told me, "It's a good thing we went ahead with the C-section.  When I cut you open, I had to search around to find her.  She was so high up in your pelvis and was caught up in there, almost like there was a ring around her, holding her in.  I don't think she would have ever dropped down on her own." (Meaning she wouldn't have dropped down to start labor on her own, without being induced.  And being induced was not an option for a VBAC).

We didn't know if we'd ever truly know why a C-section was best for us, but upon hearing those words from the doctor, we had our answer as to why.  I didn't get my answer for "what delivery should I do?" by the heaven's opening and hearing a loud voice.  My sweet husband, who was in tune with the Spirit, helped me receive the answer that was best for us in a very still, small voice.  A voice and feeling I would have missed, as I was waiting for something louder and much more direct.  Everything worked out how it was supposed to, to which I am very grateful.  And most importantly, our sweet Olivia was brought into this world safely and very healthy.

We were wheeled back to our recovery room (where we started the morning).

Little O was given her first bath.  I was still laying flat and couldn't see it.  We thought she'd cry, since she was pretty fussy in the Operating Room, but she tolerated it quite well.

We also knew right away that this little lady has RED hair!  With 2 red heads and 2 blondies at home, we were anxious to see what we'd get this time.  Although I still don't have my dark headed baby like I've always wanted (who am I kidding?), I'll take another gorgeous red head any day.  Her hair and Ben's arm hair were twins!

Her first picture with Daddy!

After her bath, she was our sweet, quiet girl.  No more crying for the rest of the day.  I can't even really remember her fussing at all either.  She was very mellow and so extremely sweet.

This about sums it up- chill and calm and so gorgeous.

We spent a few hours in recovery.  I was allowed almost immediately to start eating- a totally different experience than last time.  I had to start off with crackers, but was told I could eat a meal in a few hours if I wanted.  I was also able to sit up in bed.  I took that very slowly, as I didn't want to risk throwing up right after abdominal surgery (ouch!)

Later in the afternoon, we were wheeled to our new room, where we stayed until discharged.  Just like last time, we were given a very tiny room, as is code here with C-sections.  And this room was very old- it was in the old part of the hospital.  This hospital just had a birthing center remodel about 4 years ago, but they out grew it as soon as it was finished.  The nurse told us they deliver about 450 babies a month at this hospital and they just don't have room for everyone in the new, remodeled section.  So the woman who are sliced open have to recover in tiny rooms.  Seems fair, eh? :)

After school, my mom brought the kids by.  These were four very excited and very anxious children.

There just wasn't enough babies to go around for these anxious hands.  We really could have used a set of twins this time! :)

My best baby helper!

He didn't get the brother he's always wanted, but he's pretty smitten with this sweet girl.

My "baby" Lexi with the newest baby.

A proud Grandma!

A treat this time was that my dad got to be here for the first time ever to meet an Andros grand baby right after birth..  He was actually in town on business for meetings this day and the day before.  He was scheduled to fly home the afternoon of the birth and wasn't going to have time to come to the hospital before his flight left.  But when his boss heard that he had a grandchild born that day in the area, he let my dad change his flight to the next day and Dad was able to come and meet Olivia.

Olivia with Grandma and Papa Blakeslee

Group shot!

Me with all 5 of my beautiful children!  I have FIVE!  Wow!

Our first family photo

I always look TERRIBLE right after birth.  My face and nose swell to twice their size during the last bit of pregnancy, and then during labor and delivery, they swell another 2 sizes.  So "first family pictures" are not my favorite because I look so yucky, but it's all for a good cause.  I was also not sitting fully up at this point because I suddenly got very nauseous. 

What a blessed day!  Olivia arrived safely and my C-section experience this go around was already much more positive than last time.  D-Day was a success!  We are so in love with our little angel girl.  We have been blessed beyond measure. 

Monday, September 16, 2013

Date Night

I stole an idea from a friend- she always takes her girls out on a "girl's night" before a new baby is born.  Now that I have girls big enough to enjoy a night out, I decided we needed a girl's night out before our new baby came.  I even stole my friend's idea on what to do, as well- pedicures!  My toes needed a fresh coat of paint and I really like them looking nice for delivery- the rest of your doesn't look/feel great right before or after delivery, so the least I can do is have nice looking toes.  All my girls LOVE having their nails painted, so I knew it was the perfect outing for all of us.

The little salon we went to has two cute little kiddie chairs that were perfect for the twins.  They did have to scoot all the way to the end of the chair to get their feet to rest in the water, but it worked great.

Chloe got to sit in a big girl chair like me!

The BIG mama

The girl's loved being pampered.

The twins were so cute about it- when Leah was getting her toes painted by the worker, Lexi could not keep from smiling, constantly.  She kept whispering to Leah, "What does it feel like?"  She was so glad when it was her turn and loved every minute of it.  Leah was very chill, acting as if she had had professional pedicures for years. :)

The best shot I could get of all the finished toes.  We all got flowers on our big toes.  Chloe was especially excited about that.

The evening was topped off with blizzards at Dairy Queen!  If there is one thing all my children can agree on, it's eating ice cream and lots of it.  What a fun night we had!

Not to be outdone, the boys went on a "man date."  Man dates are Mitchell's absolute joy in life and he begs Ben for them often.  This night, they went to a nearby park to play baseball together (Mitch's current obsession), and then to iHop afterwards to eat.  My little boy has grown into a man sized eater these past few months.  He can eat more than I can on some occasions.  Ben said he poured every single kind of syrup offered on his pancake, and ate it all!

We all met up after our "dates" to stop by Grandma Cynde's together and wish her a Happy Birthday!

I won't announce how old she is (and she really doesn't look a day over 40), but she is our favorite Cynde!  We love this birthday girl!  She is so good to our family and the kids just adore her.  So do I, to be honest.  What a wonderful friend she is to me and our entire family.  Happy Birthday to a wonderful lady and fantastic grandma!

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Back to School

Back to school was a little different for us this year.  We moved about a 1.5 miles down the road last November, and that short move, which was in the same neighborhood, had us switching schools (same district, though).  We were allowed to stay at our current school and finish out the year, but at the start of this year we would need to start at our new school.

Sometime in the summer, I talked to one of the secretaries at our new school and was told who Chloe's new teacher was.  She was thrilled to hear that she was in the same class as two friend's from church.  I was very excited for her as well- she has been very brave about switching schools, and was even willing to do it last year in the middle of a school year.  But in the back of my mind, I was always a bit worried, as a friend of mine had seen the entire class list a month or so before that and said Chloe's name was not on the class list.

The day before school started, I took Chloe and Mitch down to the school to let them walk through it and become more familiar with it.  We also wanted to find their new classrooms.  I stopped at the office to find out the classroom numbers, and I also decided to double check who Chloe's teacher was.  As the secretary looked the information up, Chloe told the secretary out loud who her teacher was, to help her find it.  It was then that we found out that Chloe did NOT have that teacher.  Chloe's eyes immediately filled with tears, though she tried to hold them back.  My heart sank.  She was devastated.  I was devastated for her.  Now knowing that she was not in the same class as her friend, changing schools just became not as much fun.  Had she known from day one that she wasn't in their class, I think she would have been fine.  But having thought for the past 6 weeks that she was in their class, she had gotten use to that idea and had allowed herself to become very excited about it. 

As we made our way down to find their classrooms, I tried to console Chloe as best I could.  She was holding it together very well.  The tears were gone and she was putting on a very brave face as we explored the school.

We found Chloe's "new" classroom first.  To our luck, her teacher was even there and we got to meet her and talk to her.

Chloe found her desk

And her locker, which she commented was so much smaller than her locker at her old school.  (It is tiny).

Chloe and Mrs. Nielson

Mitch Man starts kindergarten this year.  Our district just received word in July that 10 elementary schools in the Auburn School District had received funding for funded full day kindergarten.  Our new school was one of those schools.  Mitch was very excited to know that he got to eat lunch at school. 

With the new full day kindergarten, our school had to bring in new teachers over the summer.  There are 4 full day kinder teachers at this school.  For whatever reason, they decided not to assign the kids permanent teachers until a full week after school starts.  Each kid was assigned a teacher to report to on the first day, and then they would rotate every day after that to a new teacher until they had spent a day with each one of them.  We found Mitch's "first day" classroom entrance from outside.

We also found his classroom inside too.

The next day- September 4, Chloe had her first day of 3rd grade!

What a beautiful little girl I have!  She was so excited to get ready and look nice on her first day.

Something new for our family this year is that the kids get to ride the bus to and from school every day. Our old school was a walking school and we never had anyone to walk with so I just drove Chloe everyday.  The kids were all very excited to walk to the bus stop that first morning.

At the bus stop!

Here comes the bus!

On she goes!

Mitch and the girls waved goodbye to her.

Later that morning, we went to the school for a kindergarten orientation/meeting.  We turned in school supplies and got to meet all the teachers and hear about the new curriculum and plans for the new full day program.

After all the boring talk, the kindergarteners got to go to their "first day" room and get their bus passes and look around the classroom.  Mitch was all too anxious for the next day to come so he could start school too.

After school was over, we walked down to the bus stop to pick Chloe up. 

She survived her first day!  She told us later that night that she was still bummed that she wasn't in the other class with her friends and I'm sure it will take some time to get over, but we are very hopeful and optimistic that she will meet some wonderful new friends in her class.  She's a strong girl and this will hopefully be a great experience that she will grow from.

After the first few days, Chloe told us that her new teacher is "mean" and "unfair."  We had heard that this particular teacher is strict.  I can't vouch for mean and unfair quite yet.  I don't think a strict teacher ever killed anyone.  I can honestly say that I'd be a strict teacher myself.  I am all about order and kids being well behaved and in line in order to bring about the best possible learning outcome.  I think she will be fine and that she will thrive in that environment.  We sure hope so, as we have to have strict rules for her (and all the kids) in certain things at home in order to keep things under control and to best teach them.  It will be an adjustment for her, as her teachers from the past 2 years have been very sweet and warm-fuzzy teachers.  Chloe thrived on that environment at school too- both of her teachers thought very highly of Chloe and she was an excellent student.  But I think she'll do fine and maybe even learn some good life lessons about everything not always being fair.  Being out of our comfort zone is good for us, right?

Thursday, September 5th was the first day for the other 3 kids!  Can I tell you that the excitement level in our house that morning was through the roof?  Mitch was dressed and ready to go by 6:10 a.m.  He packed his own lunch and tied his own shoes.  I noticed he'd barely eaten any breakfast, I'm sure due to the excitement.

First day of Kindergarten!  This is one well prepared boy for full day kindergarten, after his full days 2-3 times a week at his pre-K program last year.

Waiting for the bus with Chloe

My sweet boy

He was very excited to ride the bus.  He didn't even really want me to walk him to the bus.  He's very anxious to just walk with Chloe and not have me there, I'm sure to prove that he's a BIG boy.

Back at home, we had about 30 minutes until the twins' first day of preschool started.  Wait... my babies are in preschool??  Time sure does fly.  They have become so grown up in the last year, but still hard to believe that my baby girls are old enough for any kind of school.  And boy have they been excited about this first day all summer.  They've been dragging their backpacks all over the house for weeks.

My little Leah- still my tiny baby, really. 

She was very excited to get to use Chloe's old preschool backpack from 5 years ago.

My sweet Lexi

She got to pick out a new backpack and loved it! 

How fun to get to start school (and be in the same class) with your best friend!

Best buddies!

9:00 and we were off to Ms. Cindy's Preschool- the best preschool around.

We ran into Cindy the week before at church and after telling her for the first time which girl was who, she had it down and identified the girls on the first day correctly.  I was very impressed that she made such a point of making sure she know who was who for the first day.

She showed them where to put their pencil boxes and where to hang up their backpacks.

The twins didn't give me a second look as they ran off to find toys to play with.  Oh, has Leah come a long way.  There was a time when I thought she'd never be able to attend school, as she was a wreck when I'd leave her with anyone.  After some hard love (leaving her anyways and paying babysitters extra and thanking friends profusely for putting up with her hours of crying), she has come through and is a very strong little girl who does great in new situations with new people.

Lexi and Miss Cindy- she's truly the best!

Leah and Miss Cindy

I left after these pictures and there was no hesitation from either girl about me leaving.  What big girls I have!

I had a doctor appointment during school that ran over.  I texted my friend, who's little boy is in the class too, to ask her if she could pick the girls up for me.  I was super bummed to not be there to pick them up after their first day.

Leah and Lexi with Austin- that is 3 super excited kids after their first day of school.  Austin is such a sweetheart and the girls tell me they play with him a lot at school.  Austin can't tell them apart (yet), which is really cute and funny. 

Now, 2 mornings a week for 2.5 hours, I am all alone at home.  So far, most of those few mornings I've had have been spent at the doctor's office, and one morning was running errands like crazy in preparation for baby coming.  I have to admit not having to worry about a babysitter for my doctor appointments was super nice, and grocery shopping and running errands alone was heavenly.  It will be nice to have a few quiet mornings with just me and my new baby girl here soon.  The twins and I are having a wonderful time home together on their non-school days.  Mitch sure can rile them up and make them rambunctious, but when it is just the two of them, they are very sweet and play so quietly together.  They are so fun to watch play together and make up games.  Having twins has been just as fun and precious as I dreamed.  What a blessing they are in our home.

We met Chloe and Mitch down at the bus stop after school.  My big boy made it through his first day!

I found this note in Mitch's folder after school.  I was so glad to hear that he'd had such a great first day.  What a wonderful teacher to take the time to write notes home about their first day.

Behind the note from his teacher, I found this note from the cafeteria, telling me that Mitchell owed money after his first day, even though there is no money in his account.  As it says on the side, he bought breakfast at school.  I was stunned!  "What a little sneak!" was my first thought. Upon questioning Mitchell, he confessed that yes, he did eat breakfast at school.  He said that his teacher asked who had not eaten breakfast at home.  Mitchell said that he hadn't, so she sent him down to eat breakfast.  To Mitch's defense, he truly did not remember that he had eaten breakfast at home that morning (it was at 6:30)- he didn't even remember what we ate until I reminded him.  And also to his credit, I really think he had no idea that he was being charged for breakfast.  I'm sure when his teacher told a hungry little boy that there was "free" food waiting for him down the hall, he didn't even think twice.  We had a good discussion where I told him that we ALWAYS eat breakfast at home and that he will never need to eat at school and that I didn't want anything like this to happen again.  What did $1.25 buy him for breakfast?  He told me an apple, a yogurt and some milk.  Awesome.  :)

I about fell off my chair when the next school day, Mitch came home with another note saying he now owed $4, which meant that he had charged lunch that day to his account.  I was quick to question my little sneak, who honestly thought it was a note telling me about his breakfast thievery.  As I questioned the suspect, Mitch swore up and down that he did NOT eat lunch at school that day.  I didn't know what to believe anymore, so I continued to ask him and he continued to tell me, getting a little bit panicky, that he did NOT eat school lunch.  He ran and got his lunchbox and showed me that he'd eaten his entire packed lunch, and even said "Ask my teacher!  I ate my own lunch!"  Seeing how upset he was becoming, I could tell that he was telling the truth.  I called the school immediately to try and find out what happened.  The secretary didn't know, and she couldn't even let me talk to his teacher because she didn't know what teacher he had had that day (with all the rotating they were doing).  But she promised me that the charge would be taken off the next day, which it was.

Since then, we have had no more random charges to his meal account.  Ben and I were both pretty bothered that they let students charge meals whenever they want, with no money in their accounts.  As Ben said, "It's like giving a credit card to a 5 year old!"  Yes, to a hungry 5 year old.  Luckily, when Mitch found out who his full time teacher would be, she sent home a note asking if he'd be eating breakfast at school everyday or at home.  Our little man also knows now that he will not be charging anything to his account anymore.  Here's to hoping!

A few dramatic happenings the first week of school, but the kids are all adjusting well to their new school.  Here's to a great year!