Wednesday, December 8, 2010

My husband is finally "on board"

Many of you might not know this but Matt and I have always had different opinions when it came to Allie's medical issues. I have always been persistent at finding Allie a diagnosis and convinced that there is a reason she doesn't eat. I'm not exactly sure what Matt was always thinking but I do know he didn't always agree or support me in my decision making with Allie's medical needs.

Matt works full time and I am a stay at home. I think since I am with Allie 24/7, I just naturally took on the roll of being the primary care giver of the girls - you know how one parent disciplines more and sets more rules, well that's me. Don't get me wrong, Matt does a lot with the girls and he's a great dad. He spends every possible moment with them and loves them to pieces. However, I am the one who makes sure they eat their meals, brush their teeth, go to bed on-time, do their homework and do the majority of the disciplining. With all of this, I naturally was the one who overseen all of Allie's medical issues. I am the one dealing with insurance and the many calls to doctors and nurses. I am the one who knows all of her care takers phone numbers by hand and knows how to reach them immediately if I need to. I am the one who schedules all of her appointments, determines when her next follow up appointment will be and orders her monthly supplies for her feeding tube so she doesn't run out. I am the one who compiles the extensive list of questions when meeting with the doctors - to ensure we don't leave anything out. Overall, I am the one who knows Allie the best and knows (or thinks I know) what is best for her.

Matt and I have spent countless hours disagreeing about her medical treatment and what tests we should proceed with. Basically, we have disagreed about almost every topic when it comes to Allie. We have never fought about it seriously but there has always been some tension between us in regards to Allie.  I always felt that since I am with her 24/7, I know her best and I see every symptom, abnormal poop, vomiting episode and everything else that accompanies her ailments.  I know what each cry indicates and how to sooth her.  I am the one who tube feeds her everyday and deals with the countless vomiting episodes and comforts her while she vomits.  Matt deals with this too but not nearly as often as me because he's at work all day and by the time he gets home at night, Allie has already received 3 tube feedings and she will only need 1 more that day.  Allie's medical issues have been right in front of me for a year and a half - every day all day.  Matt has also been dealing with her medical issues but it hasn't been in his face as often as mine.  With this, I think my need to find a cure is more prominent than his because seriously I'm tired of it being in my face everyday all day!!!  I don't get to escape it and neither does Allie. 

With all of this said, I don't want you to think that I'm comparing our parenting rolls or who is more important, that is not the case.  We each carry equal roles in our marriage and though our roles may be different (he works and I stay at home with the girls) in the end, both of our rolls are equal and our girls need both of us in their lives to thrive and become independent and responsible adults. 

So, to get to the point of my story.  A couple weeks ago we were visiting family in Escanaba and Allie was having one of her many vomiting episodes.  My mom and I were standing in the her kitchen comforting Allie while she vomited and Matt walked in.  Allie continued to vomit for about 5 minutes when all of a sudden I heard Matt say, "I'm finally on board with Allie.  I'm convinced something is wrong with her".  I looked at him, looked at my mom, looked at him again and wanted to hit him.  Seriously Matt - your FINALLY on board?????  Part of me wanted to cry and the other part was pissed.  How could it have taken him this long to finally see what I was seeing for the past 2 years. Allie doesn't eat orally there is no way to not see that.  She was dying right before our eyes before her feeding tube was placed.  Once her feeding tube was placed, we dealt with countless episodes of intense vomiting and countless trips back to Milwaukee to get her J-tube put back into place because with all her coughing and vomiting it became dislodged from her intestines.  Seriously, with all of this he still didn't believe there was something wrong with her.  In all honestly, I think Matt knew something was wrong but he was in denial.  He was thinking one day she would just start to eat.  This vomiting episode at my mom's house changed Matt for some reason.  Not sure why because to me there was nothing "significant" about this vomiting episode but apparently it was "significant" for Matt. 

I am so very thankful that Matt is finally on board with Allie's medical issues.  It was a changing day for me because now I have my husbands support and I am no longer having to make all of her medical decisions by myself.  Don't get me wrong, Matt was always involved with Allie's medical issues however I was always the leader.  I will continue to be the leader but with Matt having my back, it will be a whole lot easier to make decisions on her medical care. 

So, THANK YOU to my wonderful husband for now being on board with Allie.  With him on board, I feel less "crazy" in thinking I'm the only one who truly believes something is wrong with her.  Please continue to pray that the doctors can figure out a diagnosis for Allie so we can see what road lies ahead and we can start providing her the best treatment possible.

On a side note, please keep Matt in your prayers.  During a routine physical to join the volunteer Kronenwetter fire department, it was discovered Matt has an enlarged thyroid.  An ultrasound this morning indicated the thyroid is VERY large and it's a complex nodule (meaning solid and cystic material).  His next procedure is a fine needle biopsy to check the nodule for cancer.  We are currently waiting to hear from the doctor.

Here are some pictures of Matt and the girls.  He's always been "on board" with the girls but now he's "on board" with Allie's medical issues too.  Love ya honey!

Daddy & Chloe carved a pumpkin together

Daddy & Allie doing a project at the Wausau museum

Allie making sure daddy is putting her new bed together properly

Daddy and his girls at the lake (on our way to Saginaw)

Father & daughter

Chloe & Daddy at the U.P. State Fair in Escanaba

Allie & daddy feeding the animals at the fair

Daddy setting up a real cool DVD screen while camping with friends

Daddy & Allie chilling while camping

Allie & Daddy at the Zoo while we were at the Mayo Clinic getting a 2nd opinion for Allie

My super silly and wonderful husband.


  1. Well, as I see it, God knows your family can handle these obstacles. You have already proven this with Allie! Please keep me updated on Matt. If there is anything that we can do to help please let us know. We are always here for you guys.

  2. A very touching tribute Jodi. I think daddy's feel the need to "fix" things and when it's beyond their ability, it's easier to pretend the issue isn't there.

    Beautifully written...

    I'll be thinking about Matt as well...

    If you need to talk, let me know...


  3. I understand the frustration of Daddy not being 100% on board...I pray for the day my sweet husband gets "on board" with Madison.

    Every doctors appointment and medical test brings a fight between us. He often can't answer the simple questions about Madison's health history or tell the nurse why we are there that day to see whatever specialist we are seeing.

    I thank God you are finally a fully united front advocating for Allie!! It can get lonely going alone!

    Daddys are awesome!