Saturday, July 26, 2008

Saturday, July 26, 2008 - Update

There were a lot of people at my cousin Izzy's house.
This is my Great Grandpa Jackson. He's really funny.

And my Great Grandma Jackson. Isn't she lovely?

Here's Izzy!

And my furry cousin, Abbey.

Great Grandpa with a sock monkey. . .so silly.

My family from Colorado was in town this weekend. We all met over at Donnie, Shelley and Izzy's house for dinner. Shelley is quite the amazing cook and hostess! My cousin's two little girls are absolutely precious. (I'd post pictures of them, but I forgot to ask permission and I always do that first.) We enjoyed ourselves and everyone was amazingly understanding! Thank you everyone. It was great to see you!

I also wanted to direct you to a blog of twin boys who were born 16 weeks too soon: Rhys and Bentley. Shortly after birth, Bentley joined my sweet Logan in heaven. His brother, Rhys, is needing our support and prayers. Please pray for this precious family.

Tomorrow is Stacie's birthday. Now, awhile ago I decided that I was only going to post birthday wishes to immediate family. I was afraid if I tried to do everyone than that would be all I did and if I forgot someone. . .I would feel awful. However, since this blog was Stacie's idea, I had to wish her a happy birthday on it. It's a special birthday after all. Turning 29 for the second year in a row deserves a celebration. . teehee.

A Little Closer to Normal

Occasionally, I hear rumblings of criticism about Ryan and me. I should know that a certain amount of criticism comes with being a parent, but it still makes me feel bad. The majority of people have been overwhelmingly supportive and I've been so thankful for that. I think people expect us to be normal. Okay, so we were never really "normal" to begin with. Who else has five guinea pigs, two rats and a storage room full of Halloween props? But, that's beside the point. Do we struggle with depression? Yes. Do we have major obsessive compulsive tendencies? Yes. I think that given all that we've been through. . it could be a lot worse. As Ryan once said: There's a thin layer between being normal and completely breaking down. We do all that we can some days just to get through.

I watched my daughter, bruised and bleeding, struggle to survive. I watched my son pass away without ever getting to hold him. That changes you. We have a duty as parents to keep Olivia from getting a respiratory illness until her lungs are healed enough to handle it. We want to prevent her from getting sick until we're able to handle it. We can't pick and choose what illness she gets. . .so we protect her from everything. . .even if that means disregarding our own selfish desires to show her off to the world. That's tough at times. I feel sometimes that we're judged if we don't take her to certain places. I feel judged if we take her, but don't let people hold her. It's not like we're requesting people to wear scrubs, masks and gloves. We just ask that you don't come near her if you are sick and that you wash your hands before you touch her. I don't think that's asking too much. There have been too many instances where we've been around people who have gotten sick only hours later. Luckily, those people have been amazingly supportive and have respected our wishes. . .and Olivia has not gotten sick.

People tell me that they read my blog because I post exactly what I'm feeling. Well, this is what I'm feeling at this moment. . be it good or bad. I've been so lucky to have such supportive friends and family. Some people ask what they can do to help us. All we ask is that you try to understand so that we don't always feel like the bad guys. The next few months are going to be tough for us. Please keep us in your prayers and maybe someday we'll get a little closer to "normal."

Friday, July 25, 2008

Friday, July 25, 2008 - Update

Me, Marilee and Kerry Mommy finally found someone to play Whoonu with.

I was busy jumping.

I was thrilled to spend the afternoon with two of my friends, Marilee and Kerry. We went out to lunch and then came home and played a card game. I bought this card game years ago, but cannot ever find people to play it with. We had a really good time. I learned that Marilee does not like nuts or Saturday morning cartoons. Who knew? She likes to wear baseball caps, but does not like the World Series. Hmmm. . .I think Marilee got all of the interesting ones. I already knew that Kerry liked sleeping in and peanut butter. It was a good day.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Happy Birthday Katie!

Meeting Katie for the first time.
Love those baby blues!
Quite the horse lover!

Tomorrow (July 25th) is my niece, Katie's, birthday. Katie has the distinction of being the first of my nieces or nephews that I was able to meet as a newborn. I've enjoyed watching her grow up over the past 6 years. She's as tough as nails and as sweet as pie. I remember watching her during an Easter Egg Hunt when she was only 2-3 years old. I don't know that I had ever seen a young child so determined and competitive. That trait will serve her well in the future. We love you, Kate!


Thursday, July 24, 2008 - Update

I can't be bothered. . .
I'm busy watching Baby Signing Time!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Wednesday, July 23, 2008 - Update

Who needs it.

Olivia hasn't been too kind to me the last few nights. She's waking up multiple times and seems to have a knack for waking me up just as I've fallen back to sleep. She started sleeping through the night mid-March and other than a few nights here and there, has been continuing to do so ever since. Of course, our first guess is that a tooth is coming in, but I don't know. This morning she awoke at 2 am (after waking up around midnight) and was wide awake and ready to eat. I cleared my day, pushed housework to the back burner and was going to nap when she naps. But, Olivia has decided that she doesn't need a nap. Is it wrong of me to put her in her jumperoo in hopes that she'll tire herself out? She's still going strong. Me? Not so much. :)

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Tuesday, July 22, 2008 - Update

This rocking chair was my grandpa's when he was a little boy.
Then, it was my mommy's.
Now it's all mine! (Except mommy needs to take the Property of Jodi sticker off.)

We had Olivia's dreaded eye doctor appointment. . .poor girl just hates having anything done with her eyes. I brought my mom with me for reinforcement this time. Olivia cried, but it was nothing like last time. We didn't get very good news. Her eye crossing has gotten worse in the past month despite the patching. It's to the point that glasses alone would not correct it. So, Olivia is having strabismus surgery on Sept 4th. It's an outpatient procedure at Wesley Medical Center. . .boy, that will be a long day and one I will dread. I hated to learn that the surgery is successful only 70% of the time. Even when successful, they usually cannot make the eyes completely straight. We are continuing the patching every day until then to make sure she continues to use her vision in each of her eyes. The one good thing is that her tear ducts seemed to have opened, so they will not have to combine that surgery with the strabismus surgery. That is a blessing. I know all of this is fairly minor considering the numerous disabilities that she was at risk for. It's still difficult to know that she has to have any type of surgery.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Monday, July 21, 2008 - Update

Olivia was evaluated this morning by her physical therapist. She didn't have anything concerning to say about Olivia's progress. Olivia was proud to show off her rolling skills and even sat up unassisted momentarily. At her next evaluation, her physical therapist expects her to be mobile and a "handful." You know, when babies no longer stay where you put them, etc. I guess we'd better start baby-proofing the house pretty soon.

This morning I awoke to sad news about the passing of dear Marvin, who attends our church. We spoke to him quite a bit after Logan and Olivia were born. After he had oral surgery, we would tell him about how Olivia's feedings in the NICU were being increased and he would tell us that his feedings were increased as well. I know the church will miss him. I take comfort in knowing that he's in heaven. . .and he's with Logan. I just know that they have met one another. Since Logan's death, I have thought a lot about what heaven is like. I feel that it's too wonderful for us to even attempt to explain. Knowing that my sweet Logan is there provides me with something more tangible to relate to. It makes heaven even more desirable to me (if that's possible.)

What Is Heaven Like?

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Olivia's Baptism

Here we are in our polka-dots!
Do you like my pretty dress?

Olivia was baptized today and we want to thank all of our friends and family who attended. It was a special day for us and meant a lot to have you there. God has big plans for our Olivia. . . just as He has for all of us. I pray that Ryan and I are able to help and guide her along the way. As we were putting her beautiful white dress on, Laura said, "It won't be long until you are putting her in another white dress." Surely, it doesn't happen that fast. . .or does it?

Since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you and asking God to fill you with the knowledge of His will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding. And we pray this in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way.
Colossians 1:9-10