Thursday, July 24, 2008


I won't be around this weekend and most likely for a good part of next week too. My baby's coming home!!! After 7 long weeks in the NICU, Matthew is being discharged tomorrow to head over to Egleston. Ian and I have been there for the past four days doing our out patient peritoneal dialysis training at their clinic. Tomorrow...we practice on a living person...our BABY! EEK!! The clinic is only open on Mon - Fri, and we have to do a 48 hour trial run. So, depending on when he gets there on Friday, if the clinic is still open we can start then and finish our observation period on Monday and bring him home that evening! If not then we have our observation period Monday and Tuesday with Matthew coming home on Tuesday evening. But I will be spending the night with him in his patient room (not the NICU!) starting tomorrow night. I'm looking forward to waking up at 3am and feeding and rocking him. I'm looking forward to his screams of outrage when I give him his first sponge bath from a parent. I'm looking forward to holding him without my gaze having to stray back to the monitors if an alarm nearby goes off. I'm looking forward to him not having any wires or constraints to him...I'll finally be able to dance with my baby properly! I'm just looking forward to it all. I'll write when I get the chance and post pics! Thanks for being part of our little short journey so far!

Saturday, July 19, 2008

snapshot saturday

My, I haven't done one of these since Matthew's birth! it is. Not so much a snapshot from the past, but a snapshot of what is to come. A sneak peek if you will:

Our tentative week is July 28th thru Aug 1st. They won't actually give us a "day". But we are getting ready for our little superbaby!

Friday, July 18, 2008

It suddenly dawned on me...

that some people just don't get it, and others never will. I don't mean that in a condescending way. I didn't "get it" before Matthew. Now I do. I honestly hope you never have to! Most people I have been talking to about Matthew have all asked how I could stand to be away from him. Aren't I just sick I am missing out on all of this time with him. Isn't it disheartening for him to have been nearly on his way home, only to get sidetracked by infection and made to stay another two weeks.

So in answer to these questions my response is that it is God's way of how things should be. Like I said before, to someone else it may seem like a downer, but to another person it's a blessing. These are all blessings to me. People say I am being robbed of my time with Matthew, actually I see the opposite! I am getting to spend MORE time with my baby than most people are allowed to do. My child was born almost 9 weeks early. William was born only one week early. I will have 8 more weeks of time with Matthew than I did with William. Now granted, most of the time he is sleeping, whether I'm around in the NICU or not, but it is still a time of learning and touching and getting to know one each other.

I feel weird about even typing this, but Matthew's homecoming for the NICU will be kind of bittersweet to me. I've been able to sit and hold Matthew uninterrupted for three hour chunks at a time...that is how long it takes until I either had to pump or pee. :) How often do you get to just sit and be? It's just me and God staring in wonder at one of His newest perfect creations. No one else exists, nothing needs to be done. Just a need for rocking, singing, praying and day dreaming. I still have yet to figure out how time moves so fast in Matthew's little cubicle, especially since I have no knowledge of time when I'm there. Just in the here and now moment. Have I ever posted an actual picture of his little cubby hole?

I remember the first time I walked (well, wheeled) through those doors. It was the 2nd day of his little life and my brother and SIL had come up to Northside to visit. Since they weren't able to come for the birth with their two year old in tow...I told them to come up that day since I was given the OK to head across the street to visit Matthew. Of course, the doctor meant for me to ride the shuttle...but the shuttle was taking FOREVER! We had a two year old that was getting close to her nap and a momma that hadn't seen her baby except for the brief 1 minute stop over before the ambulance carried him to Scottish Rite the morning after he was born. So...we walked/wheeled it. (A note of precaution to other mommies - if you have a c-section and are bounced over sidewalks, gutters, dips and potholes - you will regret your hasty decision by night time!) I was so nervous when I went through those big security doors. You have to have a pass code to be let in, and only two people are allowed bedside at a time. So David and Kristen stayed in the waiting room with Leah while me and Ian went in. I reached up and held his hand as he wheeled me over to our little one's isolette. I was so intimidated by the machines, alarms, staff...everything. But the minute I saw him...everything faded away. We weren't allowed to hold him, he was on a ventilator and the top had to be kept closed to maintain his temperature...but he was beautiful.

I stuck my hand in through the port holes on the side and held his little fingers. I teared up happy tears since this was the first time I was touching my baby. :) The nurse saw and let us open up his isolette (just for a minute she said with a smile).

That minute was the fastest and slowest minute of my life. I have taken for granted SO many things. Birth - a natural event that occurs every second of every day somewhere in the world. Babies are coming into this world as I type. I wonder if those parents with full term, healthy babies realize how fortunate they are...or do they just take it for granted like I did with William. I never thought about baths and diapers and brands of formula. I just went to the grocery store and bought a can his doctor recommended with out a second thought. I grumbled out loud as I noticed we were down to a handful of diapers and had to make the trip up to Walmart after William's nap. Bathtime was just a fun game of splashing for him and an opportunity for me to get soaked.

This time around, we will probably only go through a couple diapers a day. Matthew's formula will have to be ordered online through a pharmacy distribution center. It will be far too dangerous for our little one to sit in the bathtub where germs like to gather...even the germs from him own body. Can't get the dialysis catheter wet or submerged in water. Sponge baths will be all he knows. And yet, I'm still grateful that he even gets to enjoy those. Because do you want to know the number one reason why I am so blessed to have this special child? I get to give him life the form of one of my kidneys. He already has my heart.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

The nursery pt 1

Ian and I are in the midst of preparing our home for little Matthew's homecoming. I know what you are've had plenty of time girl! But I was on bedrest for a good three months and wanted to be involved in the planning and decorating so we put things on hold. Then he got here and I have wanted to spend every free second I have had with him. :) Now with Ian at new teacher orientation and the other car in the shop for new tires...I have time to get things together a bit!

Matthew's nursery is nowhere near complete, but we have painted the walls and put the crib together. I'l be taking pictures of it by week's end to show everyone, but for now this will have to do:
This site as a picture of his bedding. Of course we didn't go hog wild and order everything you see! But enough to make it "pretty" if that is a word I can use for a boy's room!

I love cutesy nurseries! Never really been a fan of walking into a room and not knowing if it was a baby's room or a grandparent's...except with the obvious sight of the crib. They are only babies for a little while and everything will change when they become toddlers and you transform their rooms again.

William's is now all about vehicles: cars, trucks, planes and boats! On his bed, on his shelves and and toys scattered on the floor too! But when he was a baby (which I think he will always be in my eyes) he had a safari animals nursery (with touches of Noah's ark in there for good measure). Here are a few pics of his old room:

I can't wait to have another baby sleeping peacefully in his crib. Soon...just got to be patient. AAAHHH! I just remembered...I'm not very patient. ;) More to come...

Per request of Susie

Well...if you insist...I'll share more pictures of my little tiny hiney. (No not MINE - it's more jello-y and jiggly if you ask me) but the cute little one at Scottish Rite.

He's doing so well and should be coming home within the next two weeks!! We can't wait for our whole family to truly be together! Here's my little guys website if you are interested in hearing more about his fight: There's a few pics there too.

Here are pictures from this past weekend when the brother's were able to finally meet face to face. :)

Sunday, July 6, 2008


Well, we've had some welcomed guests and quite a few UNwelcomed guests this week. Little Matthew got sick with a strep infection on Tuesday. Ian and I rushed up to the hospital just in time to see them physically stimulating him to get his heart beating again. That was the scariest thing I've ever seen and do NOT want to see it again. But the antibiotics are working like a charm and he is back to his usual perky self (well, as perky as someone who sleeps 20 hrs a day can be).
My older son William was able to go visit Matthew in the NICU today for the first time. William was more amused by the faucet near us that kept turning was motion activated and people were walking by. But he did give his little brother a kiss on the head before going downstairs with grandma to see "nemo" in the huge fish tank in the lobby. It was nice to finally have the whole family together...even if it did only last about 5 minutes.
Unfortunately my dad was dealing with his own unwanted guests in the way of a stomach bug. We left his pukey self out the house! With Matthew getting over an infection this week, no need to ad a stomach virus to the mix! And honestly, I don't want it either! YUCK! All of those drugs to stop preterm labor are still fresh in my mind and I'm all puked out from those still.
We had yet another guest this week in the form of a little stray doggie. My husband was coming home from visiting Matthew on Monday night. He was traveling up I-75 North. If you have ever been around Atlanta, you know that no matter what time you are on this road...there is ALWAYS traffic. It was about 11pm and he was almost to our exit when he noticed a little dog crossing the road. Luckily up this far from Atlanta (about 30 minutes) there are only three lanes. Unfortunately, one of those lanes was occupied by a semi-truck. Ian pulled over into the emergency lane to see if he could coax the dog to him, but couldn't get out fast enough. The truck bowled right over on top of the poor pooch. Because he was little he went right under the truck, missing the carriage and tires, but just tumbled repeatedly due to the air current under it. Ian ran out to get it.
It was alive, but definitely in shock! Who wouldn't be?? Ian went ahead and put him in the back of his SUV and called me to find a 24 hour vet care place. The closest one was 20miles away, so off goes Ian to the rescue. He gets to the vet and tells them the story. They look over the little guy and give him a clean bill of health based on his quick physical exam. No broken bones or sprains or need for stitches. Just some bumps and bruises and the fact that he'll be quite sore in the morning since they were guestimating that his age was 10 years +. With out needing care, the vet couldn't keep we had a house guest for the night. The following morning we found a no-kill shelter and dropped him off.
This made us both so sad, even though we knew he was "safe" we really fell in love with him in that short amount of time. He looked just like a teddy bear. Too sweet. But not even knowing how things will go when we bring Matthew home with our Downey girl, we didn't want to add another dog to the mix as well.
So, needless to say...we are all "guested" out this week. I'm putting up the No Vacancy sign as we speak! :)


I just got off the phone with my hubby as he was leaving from his visit with our son Matthew. We take turns visiting if we can't find a sitter for William, so I go tomorrow and we will both go on Tuesday together when Ian's dad watches William for us.
I asked him how our little tiny hiney munchkin was doing during his visit and he informed me he only visited with him for about 20 minutes! He had been there for an hour and a half...why only 20 minutes? They had closed the NICU temporarily. What on earth would make them close the NICU to parents of sick babies that need the loving touch of mommies and daddies? Well, Ian had an idea...though it wasn't made sense.
When they opened the NICU back up, Ian saw a nurse and the hospital chaplain following a couple holding a teeny tiny bundle in a blanket. Ian knew a baby that small could not make it off of monitors and iv' his conclusions is that the baby didn't make it. :(
The minute he said this, we both started crying on the phone together, me on the couch and him in his car. We realized how truly lucky we are and how strong our little fighter is. We knew going into the this that it was all in God's hand, but we are so happy to know that He still has plans for our little boy. Even going into the NICU and seeing all of the babies, some VERY sick, it just doesn't register that some may not make it. You just pass a kind, knowing smile to the fellow parents and rush to your baby's bedside. You never talk about why a baby is there, you just rejoice that they are getting help.
I pray for heaven's newest little angel that has floated up into Jesus's arms tonight. Rest in peace little one. Your fight is over. Visit your parents in their dreams...I'm sure they'd love to see you. I also pray for the parents and family of this little baby. Help them get through this tough time. Give them the support and love that they need. And thank you God for letting Ian be there instead of me...You knew I would have fallen apart. Please continue to rest Your hand on Matthew.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Happy 4th!

I love fireworks. Something about them just mesmorizes me. It actually intrigues me even more now that I know how they work and what they are. All the little pieces that go into making one small shell to get an "ooh" or an "ahh" out of a crowd. If you wish to be kept in the dark, then you might want to skip this entry in hopes of keeping the mystery alive still. If you are interested, don't expect rocket science here...although the only difference in the two is the oxidizing agent for color...but that's another story. This will be kept on the level I teach my chemistry kids. We do a fireworks lab in my class to help them name the different chemical compounds in fireworks. The colors they give off during the explosion is unique to different chemicals.
But I'm getting ahead of myself. First lets start off with what a firework shell is composed of and how it packed together. First you need a shell/container that holds all the fun inside safely. Inside the shell you need black powder/gun powder, a bursting charge (the actual firecracker that booms in the sky) and stars. The stars are where the aerial display comes to life. In this shell is a colorful chemistry lesson. As I said before different elements/compounds have different chemical properties (any old chemistry students remember the old standard flame test?) That was always a fun lab day huh? :) Anyway, if you have an excellent memory you might could recall that lithium produces a red flame, barium a green flame and copper a blue flame. Now there are MANY others naturally, but this is just to give you the idea of where colors come from in a fireworks display. Now this is just for luminescent fireworks.
Have you ever noticed fireworks that change colors or seem to "fizz" on their own? Those are incandescent fireworks...made up of different things but a main ingredient is charcoal of all things. Have you ever noticed how charcoal goes from black to red to orange to white...this also reflects how hot it is with white meaning it's reached is prime temperature? Same with fireworks. A lot of the incandescent fireworks will appear gold and "sparkly" or as I refer to them as "disney fireworks" because they remind me of Cinderella's castle.
Now that you know about colors, what about shapes? Have you noticed hearts, smiley faces and stars (especially for the 4th)? How do they do that??? Well this has to do with how the stars from inside the shell are arranged. The more tightly woven together they are packed, the more compact the display of color, the more widely spaced, the more room is taken over in the night sky. Also, if the stars are arranged in a pattern...such as a see a star in the sky.
So here's hoping you enjoy your night of excited electrons dancing in the sky. My family will finally be able to spend America's birthday together watching the show downtown tonight. Can't wait. Have fun, be safe!

Swidget 1.0