Tuesday, August 30, 2011

If Someone Fed Me Every Three Hours I Would Be Happier

All signs point to decreased brain function.
For me.
It's unfortunate, considering there wasn't that much to begin with.

Somewhere along the line I lost some of my hearing.
Not enough to make a difference...but enough to annoy me from time to time.
It's most noticeable at night - as soon as my head, or my ears rather, hit the pillow.
I fall asleep to white noise most nights.
Some nights it's worse than others.
Amazingly, I didn't notice the white noise while I was pregnant.
Can anyone explain that?

The other night I fell asleep to both the white noise and the sound of the air conditioning blowing through the vent.
Not too long after falling asleep I woke with a start and sat straight up in bed.
I was convinced I was deaf.
In fact, I started crying, so convinced I was.
The reality?
The air conditioning had turned off, waking me up.  And the lack of air...the silence...
Well, like I said, I cried because I thought I had gone deaf.

I am quite certain it's going to get worse before it gets better.
My poor brain function that is.





Monday, August 29, 2011

Seriously? I Have To Come Up With Another Title?

Dear Abbey:

Wait, did Dear Abbey die?  I seem to remember reading something about her passing away.  Did she leave her column in someone else's hands?

Dear Miss Manners:

Is Miss Manners still around?

Dear Whoever is an Expert In All Things Manners Related:

Is it wrong to send out one ginormous universal Thank You note through my blog/Facebook for the amazing and wonderful things so many people have done for and given to my little Emily and us?

Yes?  It's wrong?

Well then, standby everyone, you'll get a personalized thank you card from me...by 2014.

Do you people know my husband?
Do you understand the way his mind works?

Let me give you a glimpse so that you'll understand the picture I'm about to post.

He researches everything.
Consumer reports is his #1 go to website.
He has researched every appliance we have in our house to make sure it's up to par.
He recently bought a state of the art blender, and he used it a total of 7 times.
(I never used it; you should have seen it.  I was beyond intimidated.)
He decided that it didn't blend as smoothly as he wanted it to, and turned to consumer reports to find a better blender.
Find one he did, and the very same day he took the blender back to where it came from and exchanged it for the one that got a higher rating.

It was the same with our baby monitor.
We had a nice one, given to us by Jason's sister.
But...it wasn't the nicest one...it wasn't the most high tech one.
Jason left one night to buy milk.
He came back with a new baby monitor.
"Dear, I spent a lot of money on this monitor."

A few days later he mentioned that he had been surprised that I didn't get mad at him for buying the monitor.
"I'm too tired to care," was my response.

And so it has gone with everything we have purchased for the little miss.

While Emily was still in the PICU Jason and I went to purchase the last of what we needed before Emily came home.
Two items on the list?
A bathtub and a nose sucker.
I can remember taking baths in the sink and pictured some plastic something or other for Emily's bath time.

Did I forget who I was married to?

Emily's bath time is deluxe...better than mine (back when I had time for such luxuries) and she actually likes taking a bath - although her face might not suggest that.


This bathtub comes complete with a whirlpool and a shower.  Have you ever seen such a thing?

Neither had I.  Leave it to Jason. And actually, to Jason's very generous boss.  That man has taken such good care of our little Emily.  Every single thing we have purchased for the little miss has been because of the generosity of Jason's boss.  He asked me the other day if I had posted a new blog.  Does this mean he reads my blog?  Of this I'm not sure.  But on the chance that he does...

R, thank you.  Thank you for loving our little girl and for being so good to us.

One more thing...

The nurses in the PICU asked Jason if he is an engineer.  Why?  Because they think he's a nerd.  And they really used those words.  "You're kind of nerdy with all of the questions you ask."

He's my nerd though, and I love him.
I couldn't do this without him.


Friday, August 26, 2011

Can I Pay Someone To Do My Laundry?

I tried at normalcy.
I failed.

Jason and I have a routine worked out that leaves us 80% sleep deprived rather than 100%.
We'll see how it goes.
The other night Jason and I happened to be in bed at the same time and I asked him if he felt like we had gotten divorced.
He laughed.
Then I said, "At least separated?  Do you feel like we're separated?"
It's crazy.
We spend more time together than we ever have, and somehow I still miss him.

Yes.
I'm a nut case.
Go ahead and say it to my face.

Where was I?
Failed normalcy.
I got up, showered, put make up on even, and got Miss Emily ready for a day at the office.
At least ready for a hew hours at the office.

However...
I take one look at my mom and cry.
Every single time.
And Mom is always at work.
And instead of getting anything done I end up talking to my mom.
Fail #1.

Mom and I made an impromptu decision to go for a drive to see my aunt and uncle.
We got Emily and Trouble buckled in and took off.
We got as far as the turning lane of the freeway on ramp.
"Mom, I'm too tired.  Let's go another day."
She said okay and we turned around.
Fail #2.

Back at work it was time to feed Emily.
I asked my sister Amanda to get me a cup of hot water.
She brought it in to the office and Tyler, Trouble's little brother, thought Amanda was bringing him a drink.
In the time it took Tyler to spill the cup of hot water all over his arm, Emily managed to pull her feeding tube out.
Tyler and Emily were both screaming.
Fail #3.

I looked at my mom, put my head down, and sighed.
"And I willingly added to this chaos," I said.
As it turns out, Emily wasn't interested in more than half of her bottle.
Here's hoping she doesn't starve before her hero daddy gets home to put the tube back in.

I'm a chicken when it comes to the feeding tube.
Fail #4.

There is construction from practically our front door to the door of my office at work.
They make new lane shifts every other day.
I've been out of it for a few days.
There I am, driving along, enjoying the newly paved road when I notice that I'm the only car on this part of the newly paved road.
I look around some more and realize why.
The lane I'm in?
Closed.
All other cars?
Three lanes over, where they should be.
Fail #5.

I've just realized something.
Maybe this is the new normal.
This is going to get fun.

I'll tell you two things that weren't a fail.

Mom was holding Emily and she started to get fussy.
(Emily, not Mom)
After a few minutes of fussing I called Emily's name from the other side of the room.
"Emily...you're okay."
That's what I said.
Emily stopped crying immediately and turned her head towards my voice.
My mom said, "She already knows your voice."

Trouble had been watching and said, "Elimy loves her mommy and I love Elimy."
When Trouble saw her little Elimy she asked, "Can I hold her hand?"
And before I could say anything Trouble said, "Wait!  I need to wash my hands!"

And...

In spite of Jason's best efforts, the feeding tube was not cooperating tonight.
It was time to feed Emily, she had eaten as much of her bottle as she was going to, and we couldn't get her tube in.
I called my neighbor and friend, who just happens to be a PICU nurse and asked if she was home.
"I'm just leaving," she said.  
"What do you need?"
When I explained what happened, she was at my front door in 5 minutes, and had Emily's tube in within just 2 minutes.

Emily will be wearing mittens...from now until eternity.






Thursday, August 25, 2011

I Need A Nanny...Or A Maid...Or Just A Nap

I think you should trust me when I tell you that my house has never been messier.
And last night, in the middle of the mess, practically every person I know came to visit.
They all brought food.
When Jason woke up from his nap he came down to more food than he's seen our whole marriage.
I'm pretty sure he thought it was like Christmas.

Two days ago I lost it...physically, emotionally, mentally...
It was so bad Jason called my mom.
"Noelle needs you," he said.
My mom came and spent a few hours with me.
But more importantly, she spent time with Emily so that I could take a much needed nap.
That night Jason sent me to bed at 10:00pm and said, "Don't get out of bed until tomorrow.  I'm on baby duty."
Jason spent the entire night caring for Emily while I slept obliviously in the other room.
That man I am married to is amazing.

There's a song we teach children in our church.
It's called, "I Am A Child of God."

The words are:

I am a child of God, and He has sent me here.
Has given me an earthly home with parents kind and dear.
Lead me, guide me, walk beside me.
Help me find the way.
Teach me all that I must do, to live with Him some day.

I was singing this song to Emily yesterday and couldn't finish it.
As I was singing I realized that I was also making a plea to my Heavenly Father.
"Lead me, guide me, walk beside me, help me find the way..."
As I said the words over and over again, I felt peace.
Emily is His daughter, and I know that He will help both Jason and I do what's best for her.

Speaking of Emily...
She just finished her bottle.
All of it.
Without the feeding tube.
It's going to be a good day.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Yesterday's Conversation With Trouble

I had just taken a drink of something my brother Ben left on my desk.
Trouble saw the face I made.

"Is it gross?" Trouble asked.
"Yeah, it's gross," I replied.

"That's cause it's probably worm goobers."
"Worm goobers?" I asked.
"Why would it be worm goobers?"

"Ben eats worms," Trouble said with a matter of fact tone.
"Trouble, how do you know Ben eats worms?" I asked.

She looked at me with a serious look and said, "My great-great-great grandpa told me all about Ben."

I would have laughed right out loud...except I was too tired to muster that much energy.
I love that girl.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Ahhh...Life


I was only home for less than 24 hours when my daddy did this to me:


Yes, I'm home.
I've been home since Saturday night.
Boy is it different here than at the hospital!

Mommy and Daddy are so tired they can't see straight.
They think I'm going to stop breathing at any moment.
They're kind of weird.

So far life at home has consisted of sleeping, diaper changes (which I hate), and eating.
Mommy and Daddy are trying to feed me from the bottle.
Sometimes I like it; sometimes I pretend I'm asleep so they'll leave me alone and put the milk in my feeding tube.
I tried pulling the feeding tube out this morning.
Mommy was not very happy with me.
I think it's because when the nurse tried to teach Mommy and Daddy how to put the feeding tube in, I screamed and screamed, which made Daddy cry just a little bit.
I heard a rumor that if I pull my tube out Mommy and Daddy just have to take me to the InstaCare or to my pediatrician and have a professional put my tube back in.
The doctor said my nose is so small Mommy and Daddy would have a really hard time getting my tube back in.

I met my cousin Trouble.
I think she and I will be good friends.
She draws me pretty pictures and loves me.

I'm going to go now and join Mommy in taking a nap.
Daddy took care of me all morning so Mommy could get some work done.
I love my daddy.

Thank you all for praying for me.
My #1 job now is to gain weight so that in 6 months I'll be in the perfect condition for my next surgery.
Blech...surgery.
I guess if it means that my aunts won't ask why I look blue all the time, surgery is a good option.


Friday, August 19, 2011

We All Have A Story


It's amazing what 9 hours of solid sleep does for a new mommy!

Emily is sleeping soundly at the moment too.
See:


I think she got tired of watching her mom and dad...
...ahem...
kiss.

This morning Emily and I had a little talk.
It was a serious talk about Emily's future.
I was asking her who she was going to be and what she was going to do with her life.


Emily has a story to tell us...a story that will be different than most.
And as Emily's mommy I've been protective of the first chapters of that story.
The first chapters have been hard for me...some days REALLY hard.
It wasn't too long ago that I ended up on my bedroom floor curled in a ball, crying for all I was worth.

I still cry but I blame it entirely on the hormones.

One of these days - as soon as I can figure out how to write the first chapter of Emily's story - I'll share it with you.
It's likely that our little Emily will have some hard days ahead of her...
...hard days that have nothing to do with her heart.
But Emily will have us...her mommy and daddy...
...her grandmas and grandpas...
...her aunts and uncles and cousins...
...and a lot of other people too who are in her corner...

And we'll be there to make sure that every chapter of Emily's story ends with 'Happily Ever After.'

Thursday, August 18, 2011

One Day At A Time

In celebration of Emily being moved from the PICU to the recovery floor Jason and I spent the night at the hospital with her.
We'll be going home tonight.
One can only go without sleep for so long.  
Boy howdy.

This Emily of ours...
She thinks the nurses are trying to drown her with all of the formula they are giving her.
Every 2 hours...more formula.
And so far, she's got the bottle thing sort of figured out.
She can suck, and she can swallow without problems - but she could also care less.
'I'm tired now, thank you very much.  Just be a dear and put the rest of my milk in the feeding tube.'
That's what she would say if she could talk.


(we get a kick out of her little ear and how it folds almost in half)

What do I say when I talk?
I call my mom and cry just a little bit and say, "Mom, tell me I can do this."
"Tell me we're going to get her home one day."
"Tell me that it's all going to be okay."

My mom tells me those things but also tells me she loves me, and sometimes she calls me sweetheart.
And somehow, hearing my mom call me sweetheart makes me feel better.

The nurse will be in any minute with another bottle.
I'm off...to practice my negotiating skills.
'Emily, if you drink half of this bottle I'll let you go back to sleep."

I'd drink half of the bottle if someone would let me go back to sleep!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Checking In

Chances are, if you ask me to tell you what day it is I couldn't tell you.
Chances are, if you ask me to tell you how old my baby is I'd have to ask you what day it is, and then I would count on my fingers.

This is me taking a deep breath...a really deep breath...and repeating to myself, 'One day at a time...take it one day at a time.'

Our little Emily is doing as well as she can be.
The doctors call her their superstar.

In fact, if it weren't for one small thing, Emily would already have been moved from the PICU.

It's only been two days since they started giving Emily milk.
And the amount they are giving her is small...due to a small infection they think she had when she was born.
Every 6 hours the nurse ups the amount of milk Emily gets.
By Tuesday night or Wednesday morning she should be getting the full amount she needs.
At that point they will try feeding her from a bottle rather than using her feeding tube and if all goes well, we're days away from bringing her home.

We're hoping and praying...mostly praying...that Emily will take a bottle...and that she'll be able to eat.
She's a champion with her pacifier so we have great hope.


I have so many things I want to say...and to write about...
But mostly when I get home at night I'm too tired to even form a complete sentence.
Really...I'm tired.
(In case you doubted when I told you the first time.)

I will say this before my eyes close for good...and I hope that I can say it the way that I feel it.
One of the things that has gotten me through this...and that will get me through whatever is to come is this:
Jason.
And it's not just that he's a rock...that he holds me when I cry...and that he LOVES his daughter...
But it's the security I feel in us...in our relationship...it's the knowledge I have that no matter what we are asked to face, we will face it together...always.
And all of that brings peace to my otherwise battered heart.

I love my husband.
I love my daughter.



Friday, August 12, 2011

The Nurses Love Our Baby Too


Is it wrong that Jason and I laugh at the middle picture?




Thursday, August 11, 2011

Blessings

A few nights ago Jason and I were talking about my blog.
We were discussing the journey my blog has been on and the place my blog has stayed for a little while.
A light place, generally filled with happy stories, cute pictures, and a little bit of romance.
Jason asked if I thought my blog would change now that Emily is in our lives.
I've thought about it a lot and the answer to that question is yes.
My blog will change because I have changed.
I told my mom that if and when things settle down I'm going to need therapy...therapy from someone who specializes in post traumatic stress disorder.
I really might.

I'm beyond grateful to all of you who have stuck with this blog's journey...with my journey.
I'm grateful for the friendships, and the love, and the support...and mostly the faith and prayers that have been offered on my little one's behalf.
Jason and I pray for you every night...you who pray for us.  We thank our Heavenly Father for all of you, and ask for His blessings to be with you because of your faith.

This blog will some day go back to being light, and fun, with a bit of romance...but it will also be something more...something more because you've given me a safe place to let it all out.

Our Emily...and by our I mean yours and ours, she's a fighter.  She came through her surgery as well as the surgeon had hoped.  When we were finally reunited with her, after a 6 hour wait, she was sleeping peacefully.  She is in the best of hands, and after spending an hour with her, we left her in those hands to come home and get the rest that we so desperately need.

If all goes well and Emily stays strong, she could be home with us within 10 days...and all three of us need that more than anything else.




My friend Joann sent me this link today.  After climbing into bed I opened it and listened and cried healing tears.  Thank you Joann...thank you for loving me and my baby girl.





We're past the first big hurdle, and we couldn't have done it without you.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

What A Day


Jason wishes he had invented the orange construction barrels.
He thinks he would have been rich by now.

By the time most of you read this our baby girl will be in the middle of her first open heart surgery.
It's been an incredibly long, emotionally draining, HARD day for this mommy...and for Jason, but he shows his emotions differently.

Tonight when the day nurse introduced us to the night nurse she said, "This is Emily's dad.  She has his ears.  And this is Emily's mom.  She cries, but don't worry.  She's had a hard day but she'll be just fine."  
And then the nurse got tears in her eyes too so it made me feel better.

I'm tired and it's way past time to take my pain pills.
I need to process some news we got today about our little angel, and I need to be able to talk about it without breaking down.

If we haven't reached our quota of prayers would you be so kind as to pray for my little one...and for her mommy's broken heart?

I asked Jason to send me his three favorite pictures of the day.
That daddy is addicted to his daughter.
I'll be back when I can.







Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Just Keep Swimming, Just Keep Swimming

They are releasing me from the hospital today.
While I'm grateful to finally be approved for 'graduation' I'm apprehensive too.
For the last 5 days I've been a 10 minute walk from Emily's room.
And when we are finally brave enough to leave the hospital later today, we will be an hour's drive away.
How is that a good thing?

The hospital offers housing for parents in our situation but we don't qualify because we don't live far enough away.
There are hotels that offer discounted rates to parents in our situation but we're not sure we want to spend the money for hotels.
We've had a couple of people generously offer us their couch, or their basement bedroom if we need a temporary place to stay, but for now, while I'm recovering especially, I think we need the comfort of our own place.

We'll figure it out.  We'll find a balance that works for us.  And hopefully that balance includes as much time with Emily as possible.

Emily was supposed to have an MRI yesterday for a closer look at her heart.
When we got to her room yesterday morning we found out the MRI had been postponed until Thursday.
When we asked why we were told "The cardiologist didn't want to deal with her today.  They've got other patients who are much more critical than Emily."
I didn't react well to the 'didn't want to deal with her' part of that statement, although I was grateful she wasn't considered critical, but once tears start they don't stop easily.

When the group of doctors did their rounds and ended at Emily's bed I asked them how long she had to have the one arterial line that was preventing us from holding her.  I might have had a rather large lump in my throat, and my red eyes might have clued them in to the fact that I could be considered unstable.

They discussed it amongst themselves and determined that the arterial line at that point wasn't serving any real purpose and they would take it out later in the day.
And further, the nurse decided that if she wrapped Emily in a blanket to protect the line until it was removed, we could safely hold her.
Again, it might have had something to do with their fear of my emotional state.

Emily is on a drug for her heart that makes her agitated and a little bit grumpy.
She doesn't like to be stroked.
She does like to feel pressure on her feet or on her head and so we spend a lot of time holding her feet in one hand, and holding the top of her head with the other hand, and through it all her little body jumps and twitches, and she whimpers.
The minute they put her in my arms yesterday she calmed down.  Everything about her was relaxed and she slept peacefully in my arms, and then later in her daddy's arms.
I said to Jason, "Can't they see that this is what she needs?"


My mom called me yesterday and after the conversation ended she called my sister Heather.
"Noelle's not handling it today.  Not even a little bit.  I'll take care of your kids, you take care of her."
And so my sister came to my rescue.  She took me to lunch...as far away as the hospital cafeteria, but it was away enough...and she listened to me vent.  And then she cried with me.  The few hours I spent with her were enough to get me through the day.
And when she left, and I was safely tucked into bed for a long nap, Jason left too.  
He went home and went on a 40 mile bike ride.  My sister cleared my head and Jason's bike cleared his.

And now today we start all over again.
We'll hold our baby, we'll smile and agree when every doctor who see her tells us how cute she is, and we'll keep praying.  That's really all we can do.




Thanks for reading...for being there for us...and for your kind and loving comments.
Knowing that my little Emily is loved by all of you, that is food for this mommy's soul.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Daily Miracles


Last night was hard.
Perhaps the hardest night I've had yet.
Not in terms of physical pain, but emotional.
Jason squeezed next to me in the bed and put his arm around me while I cried.
I told him the deepest aches of my heart and he just listened, and wiped away my tears.

This morning I took a deep breath and told myself that it would be a better day.
Jason and I made the journey to our little Emily's room - in the neighboring hospital.
When we walked in Emily had a new nurse.
Earl has been there with other patients every time we've been with Emily, but this morning he was Emily's nurse.

He smiled and said, "Today I'm Emily's nurse and I get to make the decisions, and I have a surprise for you."
I cried again, but this time tears of happiness.
I knew what Earl's surprise would be.


There is not a thing that could have calmed my troubled heart more.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

In The Last 24 Hours...

...this is as much contact as I've had with my baby girl.
And it lasted a total of maybe 10 minutes.



She has a daddy who doesn't like to leave her side though, and I'm grateful that he's here.
 I'm grateful that Jason and his daughter have had a chance to bond one on one.


It's probably going to be a while before they let us hold our daughter but in the meantime we'll get as much finger holding in as we can.


My goal for today is to do whatever it takes for them to okay a trip to the NICU.

As of last night, the report we heard was mostly positive.
Emily has what they think is an infection of her intestine...although the doctors are baffled by the fact that she's not sick.  In fact, she's quite stable.
She has a breathing tube just in case, but she's doing most of the work and the doctors are pleased.

This infection will delay any plans they might have to operate on Emily's heart.
In fact, at this point they have her in the NICU and not the Cardiac Intensive Care Unit.
Once moved she'll be in good company.  Her little cousin Lucy will be her across the hall neighbor.

The cardiologist told Jason yesterday that they are considering two options:

1. They will go in and do what they call the 'full repair' right now and hopefully get things done with one major open heart surgery or

2. They will do a less invasive surgery now to hold her over until she's a little bit older, when they will do the 'full repair.'

They plan to do an MRI on Monday and then meet together as doctors, to come up with their best recommendation.

Short of having the blood test to confirm it, the doctors have verbally ruled out Down's Syndrome.
A fact which we thought we knew the moment we first saw the pictures the doctor took for us after they had Emily stabilized in the NICU.

What they haven't ruled out is a diagnosis of a condition known as DiGeorge Syndrome...
...a condition that can only be confirmed by blood work.
Little Emily's ears are 'lower' on her head than normal, and for now that is the only thing the doctors have to go off of, in their 'it might be a possibility.'
We probably won't know the findings there for a few weeks, and then, if she does have it, we won't know the severity for some time.

Clinically speaking, that's as much as I've got for now.
Emotionally...well, that's another story.
And I'm not sure that I'm ready to get into that yet.

The last 24 hours have not been easy for us.
And last night, when we finally had a chance to talk and to be together, Jason and I both shed a lot of tears.
My husband feels the burden of worrying about both Emily and me...and it's hard on him.

I got an anonymous comment yesterday...one that has left me unsettled.  And although I'm sure the commenter meant well...

"I have a hard time with something you and your family always say.  That is 'we all have the faith that what the Lord wants will happen', or 'God is in charge.'  It sounds like you're saying that the Lord has intentionally inflicted this suffering and I'm sure you don't really mean it that way."

The commenter then went on to interpret what he or she thinks I must really be saying...to define what it is I really must be thinking...according to his or her definition of what 'the Lord's wants'.

Opening myself up in a manner like this...blogging...I realize that I leave myself wide open for scrutiny, for judgement, and thankfully, mostly, for an incredible amount of love and support.  But to the anonymous commenter who I think really did mean well, let me say this:

...and in doing so, I remind myself of what I really believe.

God IS in charge, and His will concerning my daughter and her life WILL happen.
And in saying that, I am in no way saying that I believe He is intentionally punishing her for something...
God has a plan for everyone of His children...a plan that I believe was set into motion long before we came to this earth.

And by saying that God is in charge, I'm simply accepting God's plan...whatever that is.
That doesn't mean that I won't plead and hope for the best possible outcome for my daughter...
That doesn't mean that I won't pray for continued miracles and for successful surgeries...
But what it does mean is simply this: no matter what the outcome, no matter Emily's future, I believe that God will allow only what is best for Emily, and for me and Jason.

And that...trusting that God is in charge of Emily's life...that is how I define faith.
And between you and me Anonymous, I believe that God is more than okay with my definition.
If you believe that the purpose of this life is to align your will with God's...and I do...I think that at least for today, I'm headed down the right path.

To all of you who aren't so anonymous...
Jason and I are strengthened by your comments and messages of love.
As we read through them last night we cried again...but they were mostly tears of hope and gratitude.

We'll be okay...the three of us.
We may come out of this looking like we've fought a battle -
(that's how my mom told me I looked yesterday and it's physically how I feel today)
And we may have puffy eyes once in a while for the tears we are still likely to shed -

But we'll be okay...because we have each other, and the blessing of knowing that this little angel is ours forever.







Friday, August 5, 2011

Another update

Baby Sister again

I went back and read all of your comments and just cried and cried at the support and love and faith and prayers that are going out to my sister and her hubby and their little one

Thank you so so so so so much

I'm giving you another update...Noelle didn't tell me to do this one, so I hope she won't mind

The valve that we've all been praying would grow big enough hasn't done that

Emily will have to have surgery within the next few days where they'll put in the shunt, and then in 6 months they'll do a surgery to fix it

 Noelle still hasn't been able to hold Emily (that's that last I have heard anyway), and has only been able to hold her hand

Our parents went up to be with them and help comfort Noelle and keep her company, as she is understandably having a hard time

We all have the faith that what the Lord wants will happen, but, at least for me, it's been really hard to see her tiny body and think of them performing surgery on that poor little girl


And then I think of all the other people that have had to/are going through the same thing, and my heart hurts even more

But, it will all turn out okay

Thank you for your continued prayers on behalf of this sweet little girl

And I will let you know when I know anything else

Houston, we have landed

As in, Emily has landed :)

It's Baby Sister here

Noelle asked me to post a quick update for you all

She was in labor for 24 hours

Three of those hours found her pushing with all her might, but to no avail and they ended up doing a C-section

She was finally born at 5:00 this morning...or somewhere around there

Noelle didn't see her before they took her to nicu, but Jason did

She wasn't breathing initially and is still having some breathing difficulties, but is doing better

They are still waiting to hear from the cardiologist, but mom and dad are doing fine

Just exhausted and trying to get some sleep

Baby Emily ended up weighing 6 lbs 10 ozs and is 19 inches long

And now, the part you've all been waiting for...


She's beautiful :)

I can see some of both in her already

Now, if you'll excuse me, I must go dry my tears and get back to work

One of us will give you an update as soon as we know anything more :)

ps I'm sorry about the lack of fluidity in this post...I didn't sleep very well last night at all and have a slight migraine and am very tired...I couldn't help but be anxious for this little girl to come into the world :)

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Boredom

On the slight chance that you have all put your life on pause waiting for Emily...
You can unpause and carry on.
It's going to be a long wait.

We've been here since 9:00 last night but they didn't start doing anything until 1:00 this morning.
And now, at noon, I'm dilated to a ONE!
It was a long night here in room 2317.
At least Jason was able to sleep.

Here's something I've discovered:
No one is writing blogs at 3:00 in the morning.

Hold please...while I breathe through a contraction.

My dad just came to visit.
He was dressed in suit pants, with a white shirt and tie.
He looked very distinguished.
The nurse came in while he was here and I introduced him.
"I thought you must be a doctor from another hospital," she said.

All right, I have nothing to say.
I'll leave you to whatever it is you're doing today.

I'm sure at some point Emily will be born.
Stay tuned...but not too tuned...because like I said, it's going to be a while.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

I Can't Believe It's Finally Time

I wish I had something profound to say.
I don't...I can't even fake profound.
Jason and I sat on the couch tonight discussing where we will be Wednesday night at the same time.
We'll be in a hospital room, where I'll probably be hooked to an IV.
We'll be surrounded by doctors and their students (unless I say 'no students in the room').
And we'll be hoping and praying for the very best possible outcome.

I'm guessing that we won't meet Emily until sometime early Thursday morning.
It's been a long time coming...this introduction.
Saying that, I realize that 9 months is 9 months...it's not any longer for me than it is for any other mother waiting for their own introduction.
But somehow...in some ways...this wait has seemed an eternity.
Uncertainty will do that.

Jason told me tonight that he is more excited than nervous.
I told him, with tears in my eyes, that I'm more nervous than excited.
He held my hand and told me it was okay that I felt that way.

It's been months...and months...of praying, of pleading, of hoping, of doubting, of questioning...
...and through it all...of loving Emily and trusting that God is in charge and He knows what's best - for Emily and for her mom and dad.

I don't know if I can say thank you enough.
To all of you -
-You who have prayed on our behalf
-You who have sent messages of love and encouragement
-You who have been there for us through our journey

We have felt the strength of your prayers and our lives have been blessed because of each of you.

When I post next, it will be to introduce all of you to our little Emily.
Until then, this mommy would appreciate one ... or a few more prayers ...