This is a picture of my first apartment. I loved it there. They were new apartment buildings and I was the first to live in my apartment. It was there that I decided on a new single, independent life. Of course, I didn't enjoy being single, but I was tired of every relationship turning into a disappointment. I thought that I might as well learn to support myself and learn to live life alone. That is. . .until Ryan literally walked into my life. It was a plan hatched by my boss and Ryan's sister at an Abigail Circle meeting at their church. Ryan's sister, Kim, talked about what Ryan wanted in a girl and my boss, Pam, thought it sounded an awful lot like me. Seven years ago today, Ryan agreed to come to the office where I worked to meet me. The rest is history. Funny how one decision in life can affect your entire future. If he hadn't come by, my life would be entirely different and our beautiful Olivia Paige would not be here.
Doesn't she look like a little mini-me? Except those feet. . .they are minature versions of Ryan's. If they sold that sweater in my size, I would totally buy it.
Mom, I have a question. What kind of animal is this?
This is a big weekend for us. Not only is it Easter, but it is the anniversary of the first day we met AND Ryan's birthday is on Sunday. I've decided that he gets an entire birthday weekend. Ryan was off work today for Good Friday so we were able to start the festivities early. And, of course, she had a special outfit to wear just for dad.
First of all. . .Happy Birthday to my brother!! I hope you are having a great birthday. Olivia was lucky enough to have Nurse Holli come by and visit. I could tell that Holli genuinely thought Olivia was a big girl as she saw her when she was just over a pound. It was nice visiting with her and we did get out to enjoy the nice weather. Of course, Olivia cried for most of the walk as she would rather be held than be in her stroller. Aren't babies supposed to enjoy stroller rides? Silly girl. Better go. . .Olivia is waking up from another one of her power naps.
Julia wears her braces as an accessory. . .that girl looks good in everything.
Laura, Rebekah and Julia
Laura, Julia and Rebekah stopped by today and gave us Olivia's first ever Webkinz pet. It's a Lil' Googles named Gwyneth. What is a Webkinz pet? Webkinz pets are lovable plush pets that each come with a unique Secret Code. With it, you enter Webkinz World where you care for your virtual pet, answer trivia, earn KinzCash, and play the best kids games on the net! As if I needed another reason to squander my time on the internet. . ho hum. I'm really looking forward to interacting with my nieces and nephews again. . even if it's only in a virtual world.
Olivia is doing well. We're still having some vomiting episodes, but they seem to be decreasing number. Last night I put her in her crib for bedtime. Usually, when I put her in her crib to go to sleep, I don't hear a peep out of her. She knows it's bedtime. Last night I laid her down and went to rinse out her bottles and she started crying. I went into her bedroom and found her poor face and body covered in vomit. It was awful. Thankfully, Ryan helped change the sheets, etc while I comforted her. Poor thing. . .I just hope it continues to get better over time.
As I sat down to write my list of 'What NOT to say to someone struggling with infertility,' I realized it's not always what is said, but the intentions behind it. The majority of people do not intend to cause you heartache (and the ones that do. . .well, as one person told me, when we can pray for those who have hurt us, we are on our way to becoming more like Christ.) If truth be told, on certain days, I could have probably said something to upset myself. I think that the key is empathy.
Empathy can be defined as: 1) putting yourself in someone else’s place and imagining how that person must feel. 2) A sense of shared experience, including emotional and physical feelings, with someone or something other than oneself.
Being someone who can probably empathize with an insect, I find it difficult to understand people who are not empathetic at all. My niece, Julia, has such an empathetic heart that's rarely seen in someone her age. I sometimes felt that people equated not being able to have a child with not being able to. . .buy a new car. It's something that affects your entire being and sense of self and worth and pierces you right through the heart. Telling someone to just relax and they'll get pregnant is like telling someone with a terminal illness that they just need to keep breathing to stay alive. What is easy for some. . .is not easy for others. Empathy is a two-lane road, however. For others to show empathy for your situation, one must also show empathy for theirs. . .no matter how different the two situations are. As I sit at my computer each day, I try to find words to express how I feel so that others might see what I see and feel what I feel. That's all people want sometimes. . .just to be heard, their feelings validated and to feel that they are not alone. By simply visiting my blog every day, all of you have done more for me than you will ever know.
Olivia is officially sleeping through the night. I actually had to wake her up a little before 7 am because I heard her devouring her hand. She has been doing really well lately. We met with a nutritionist from Rainbows on Friday and our goal is to increase her daily formula intake by about 4 oz (with no vomiting, of course.) We'll see how that goes. She loves her new formula. . . so we have that in our favor.
Yesterday, I actually packed my pump away. It was kind of sad in an odd sort of way. I just hope that she got the benefits that she needed from taking breast milk for about 5 months. I always want to look back knowing that I did everything I could possibly do for Olivia. I hope she always knows how much I love her.
I unexpectedly gave birth at 23 weeks to micro-preemie twins on August 27, 2007. Olivia Paige weighed just 1 lb 1.5 oz and was 11.5 inches long. Logan William weighed just 1 lb 1.75 oz and was 11.5 inches long. Our sweet Logan passed away after 1 month and 1 day. After 105 days, we were able to bring Olivia home. She is our miracle, our survivor, our joy. . .
On November 20, 2012 we welcomed little sister, Abigail, into our lives. She was born at 35 weeks, but only spent 8 days in the hospital before coming home. We feel very blessed. To contact Ryan and Jodi you may email them at: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
You were the perfect little boy Of whom we always dreamed. Did you know we had your name picked out? All along or so it seemed.
You even had your daddy’s hands So miniature in size. In life we never got to hold you Or even see your opened eyes.
We had so many plans for you. Did you know you are a twin? I wanted you to grow up together. What a pair you would have been!
I wanted to take you to the park And push you on the swing. I wanted to teach you how to walk, And read and write and sing.
I wanted to show you a fire truck And let you ride upon a horse. I wanted to take you to the zoo To see the giraffes, of course.
I wanted you to watch cartoons And play video games with dad. And you and I would take a nap Oh, the times we would have had.
But, your mommy’s plans were not to be. “I have other plans,” God said. “You won't be playing in life’s playground You’ll be playing in heaven instead.”
And although I ache with sadness And in my arms I long to hold. I’ll see you again in heaven When my story on earth’s been told.
A thousand tiny fireflies Parading through the night Illuminate the starless skies With incandescent light They are miracles, here on earth So bold, so strong, so wise And bring to life a sense of worth For those who lack great size.
Some of this life’s smaller treasures Are the ones which matter more Than the larger joys and pleasures That we have grown to adore Volume is not as essential As the gift that lies inside Smaller souls with much potential Who shall never be denied.
A thousand tiny fireflies Parading through the night Illuminate the starless skies With incandescent light These children, while born premature Are testaments of worth Their spirits bold, their futures sure To ever bless the earth.