Lisbon Mama

A portuguese mom parenting two

Monday, April 28, 2008

It's over, almost!

I must admit I knew the private practice would be faster, but I never thought it would be this fast. We went to the appointment with the surgeon last Wednesday, as planned. He examined the lump, took my word for it when I described what we saw in the ultrasound (I lost the ultrasound report, shame on me), talked for about 10 minutes about all the different things he thought could’ve caused the lump and finally told us he agreed with the ER doctor and she should have it removed. I asked when, he said tomorrow at 10 am.

So R had her surgery last Thursday. We got to the hospital at 9 am and an hour later I was with her in the OR as they put her to sleep (that was the worst part of this whole thing, she struggled like crazy, it took an eternity for the drug to work, she started to roll her eyes and I had to use all my strength to restrain her. It was a nightmare). An hour later it was all over and I was by her side again when she woke up. By 3.00 pm we were home having pizza.

The lump itself… well, it was dying (necrosis) and it had blood and pus (disgusting, I know). It didn’t look threatening but we’ll know for sure tomorrow or the day after that. Can you tell how relieved I am?

Friday, April 18, 2008


I’m sorry for the lack of updates. It has been a complicated couple of weeks.

After we went to the ER and they decided she would have to have surgery to remove the lump, we scheduled an appointment for the 17th (yesterday) and they told us the surgery would be scheduled for shortly after that. I called my ped and asked her if she thought we should have the surgery in a private hospital, which would probably be much sooner than through the public hospital, and she said no. She said she trusts the public hospital and the doctors working there much more than those “hotels” (her words obviously).

Well, we patiently waited for the appointment and I went there with her yesterday. After waiting for 4 hours in what closely resembled a refugee camp, the doctor finally saw us, only to ask me to sign a consent form and tell me that they will call me with a surgery date in the next 2 to 3 weeks. I almost died. The minute I left that place I called the “hotel” and scheduled an appointment with a pediatric surgeon for next Wednesday. We have decided that whichever hospital can schedule the surgery sooner gets the job. My money is on the private.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008


Wow, it’s been a month already! We went on our ski trip a few days after I wrote that last post and when I came back things had kinda accumulated at work and it has taken me a while to get everything back on track.
Anyway, the ski trip was amazing, R absolutely loved it and she is a pro at skiing. We had a great time and really rested and I really took my mind off work. The only down side was how much we missed M, and we decided this was the last trip we took without him. And he really missed R too, poor guy.

Last Saturday, we found a lump in R’s neck and yesterday we decided to take her to the ped to have a look at it. It is about the size of a nut and seems the have fluid inside. The ped sent us to the hospital where she had an ultrasound and did some blood work and they finally decided they have no idea what it is. So they want to have it removed and analysed. And so we’re in for surgery in a few days. I’ll keep you updated and if you can, say a small prayer for us.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

One decision down, one to go

I didn’t mean to keep you waiting this long for an answer. We eventually decided on the Smaller School and ZM called the Big School and told them we wouldn’t be filling her position.
It wasn’t an easy decision, especially because the Big School had been in our plans for such a long time, but in the end I think we are both more comfortable with the Smaller School. I just never imagined we would be in the situation where we could actually choose. It’s hard enough to be accepted in either of these schools, let alone in both.

Now we have another decision to make, which is about transportation. As you remember, Big School was at walking distance from our house, so we never really gave this issue much thought. Now we have to.
In the morning either ZM or I will drop the kids off at school, so no problem there. But in the afternoon none of us will be able to pick them up. We basically have two alternatives: either our nanny picks them up or we can hire a child-transportation service, which is really expensive. So we have decided to explore the idea of the nanny picking them up. But this leaves us with another problem: How?

Our nanny doesn’t drive, so there are two ways she can pick up the kids. She will take the bus to the school (practically door to door bus, and about 15 minute ride) and then they will either take the bus back or take a cab. ZM is all in favour of them taking the bus home, and maybe taking a cab if it’s raining (which happens about twice a year) but I’m not so sure about it. What do you think?

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

More on the school dilemma

So we had the interview at the Bigger School 2 weeks ago. We were there for about 3.5 minutes. I must admit I was expecting more, both in terms of time and in terms of substance. I thought we were going to hear about the school’s project, the facilities, the programme. But I guess they don’t need to “sell” the school, since they have way more candidates than openings. But still, its was rather… disappointing.

Yesterday we got a call saying that R was accepted. We had pretty much decided that she would go to the Smaller School, regardless of whether she got accepted at the Big School or not, but I confess I was/am shaken. I mean, this school has been our plan since the beginning. We have always said that she would attend this school (mainly because it’s close to our house, which was the #1 criterion). If we had known she would get accepted for sure we wouldn’t even have enrolled her in the Smaller School.

But, we did go to the Smaller School, and we loved it. I remembered the good times I had there and ZM felt right at home, if you know what I mean. At first we enrolled her just to secure an alternative should she not get accepted at the
Bigger School, but then we started warming up to the idea of having her in a smaller, cosier school. And now we find out she got accepted at what had been our first choice…

We have until tomorrow to enrol her in the Bigger School or someone else takes her place.

Friday, February 22, 2008


Things are kinda slow at work. This should be good news, taking into consideration how swamped I have been for the past year or so. And sometimes, during those busiest days, I actually longed for a day when I had nothing to do.

But it was just because I didn’t remember what it was like anymore. I absolutely hate not having anything to do. I would trade a day like this for one of those when I don’t even have time to eat, anytime!

Anyway, it’s that time of year again (Lent, I mean), and I have been chocolate-less for 17 days. I swear I am going through some kind of withdrawal here. I’ve had a headache for 4 days straight now, the kind I usually get when I don’t drink coffee before 9 am. I’m seriously convinced it’s the lack of chocolate. Which means it will last for another 30 days. If I don’t get busy soon, this is going to be a bad month. And I hate it that I won’t get to drink a nice cup of hot chocolate at the end of an exhausting day spent skiing.

Oh well I shouldn’t complain right? It kinda loses it’s meaning if I complain. So I’m done complaining.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

LIfe is good

So I did start covering Victor’s cage with a dark cloth and it works great. He doesn’t make any noise until we take the cloth out. Thank you!
Now I only have to convince the kids not to uncover the bird until mom gets up. They have learned how to get up from bed, put on their robes and slippers, make their own breakfast (actually, R makes both their breakfasts) and turn on the TV. Now they only have to understand that the bird needs to remain covered until I wake up.

Although my desire to have another baby is clearly increasing (particularly after my sister asking me to babysit my 2 month old niece), this phase we are currently going through is also a great one and I intend to make the best of it while I can.
Both kids are pretty independent now (though M is still in diapers, which is distressing since R was potty trained by 20 months), they eat whatever we eat and at fairly flexible hours, they entertain themselves, they sleep well and they even let me sleep in on weekends. I am starting to take these things for granted, and that’s also why I know it’s time to have another baby, which will most likely be the last. I want to get used to these small luxuries when I know that they will last. If I get too used to them now it will make it that much harder to go back to the small baby routine. But meanwhile, I’ll enjoy it as much as I can.

And to fully enjoy this phase, we are going on a sky trip again this year, in March, and once again we are taking R with us. This time we’re going with two couples friends of ours who are also taking their kids so it should be even more fun than last year. I can’t wait.