Monday, July 30, 2012

Milestone Monday...

What's New:

Blake now knows "Thank You" and he is putting words together like "More Cookies" or "More Milk" , he is also walking ALOT more. He can do the distance from the door to car without my help.

Addison is starting to say more words, consistantly. Eating has been pretty hit or miss. Today she also had part of her Early Intervention did not go nearly as well as I hoped. I admit, I let it get me down. She is currently 17 1/2 months (actual)  / 14 1/2 (adjusted) she is measuring at 11-12 months in fine motor skills. (Fine motor skill is the coordination of small muscle movements which occur in body parts such as the fingers, usually in coordination with the eyes. In relation to motor skills of hands and fingers, the term dexterity is commonly used. / Source:

Looking at her adjusted age, it's not that far off, it's not even "that bad" for her actual age. But looking at her actual age, it's a tough pill to swallow. It's hard not to compare her to Blake and looking at her side by side with him, I don't see where she is that far behind him. At the end of the day, it's one person's view on her development and, heck it's a lot better then what we thought we were looking at. AND let's not forget, she has continued to grow and develop which is HUGE. I mean hello, let me remember this is my baby who wasn't supposed to make it! And she did... and she is THRIVING, and closing the gap between where she should be and where she actually is. I have no doubt that she will get there in time. That doesn't always make it easier though.

I can't wait to see what they both learn to do or say next....

Friday, July 27, 2012

Family of Five...

No, I am not pregnant.  No we aren't currently trying, but it's the right title for this post.

When Jake and I got married, we talked about babies and we both agreed... Whatever happens, happens. Two years later, nothing happened and we starting to worry. That's when our journey truly began. We decided we would seek out infertility treatments and it took us another year and a half or so before we got to our first IVF. Yes a lot happened in between, that's a story for another day.

But one thing we talked about a lot was family size. I am the only (between my mom and dad) but have half siblings, all of which were grown and out of the house when I came along. Jake has one sister. I wanted 5, Jake said he'd start with 3 and we'd see, I agreed. When we got our IVF cycle we talked a lot about the number of embryos to transfer back. We knew it would be no more then 2, per our doctor. But 1 vs. 2 was up to us. On Day 3 the Reproductive Endocrinologist called, he wanted to wait until Day 5 to transfer. We had 4 embryos - 2 AA's and 2 AB's (Out of 9 that fertilized) he wanted to wait two more days and see if one of the AA's pulled ahead so he could give his best recommendation. That was ultimately when we decided that we'd put back 2. If we got to Day 5 with 2 beautiful embryos, they would both go back. We had been through too much to live with "what if's". Day 5 came and we still had 2 AA's and 2 AB's, 2 AA's went back and the other 2 did not make it to freeze.

Addison and Blake (yes both embryos took, we know that for sure), are our "meant to bes".

Since they have been born we have encountered a lot of comments regarding our family size. "Oh one of each, now you are done." "How perfect, the perfect family all at once." "Stop now while you are ahead, you already have your boy and your girl."

Yes we are beyond blessed. We have our boy and our girl and I couldn't imagine that any other way. But does it mean that we still don't long for a 3rd child to love? Does it mean that it's wrong to want just one more?

Will we ever have another baby? It's hard to say. It's highly likely that we will have to do another IVF cycle (please don't tell me about your friend's cousin's sister who did IVF then got pregnant on her own, yes it happens and I am not saying it won't for us either, but there are no guarantees). There are many other unknowns as well. Will I be put on bed rest again? Will we face NICU time again? How would we manage both of these things with TWO children at home? I know that I will have another c-section, there is no escaping that. I remember bits and pieces from all of my pregnancy, c-section, recovery and NICU stay that make me question if we could handle another. And what if the next IVF doesn't work? Could we handle that heartache?

I'd be lying if I told you we hadn't already went back to the Reproductive Endocrinologist. We did and I know where we stand today. We almost pulled the trigger and went forward. But then ... we stopped.

It gets harder to tune out that baby fever as the twins grow up, but we both still have emotional scars that haven't healed. We originally wanted our babies 2-4 years apart, but that won't happen now. Does it mean it never will? I am not sure. Part of me is scared to death that something will happen and I will leave behind my amazing husband and the two babies I already have. Part of us thinks we are being selfish by asking for more. What if our only miracle card was used to let Addison and Blake live?

I am not looking for answers. Nor am I looking to answer anyone. These things just needed to be said, for me...for us... to heal. Saying it some how makes it more real.

For now... for now we are complete. We can't imagine our world any differently, but that doesn't mean that I don't wish I could be pregnant again at some point (and go full term this time). A lot of it is missing out on what I thought would be too. It gets easier, but it's still there. I don't wish what we went through on anyone and never would.

I trust GOD knows what we can handle and I trust as always His Will, will be done in the end.


Blake is a talker... and has lots to say all the time. The past few days, he has started saying "Hellllwwwoah" and pretending to babble away on the phone. He often asks me to "Call (enter name of person he wishes to speak to)" and says "I tawk". One problem, I fulfill his request and call said person, and guess what? He doesn't talk. He will also come running and say "Who dat" when the phone rings, and knows which ring tone is "Dada".

He is also walking... alot... all over the place. PT has said we should practice outside often, which is not fun when it's hot as ever. But it seemed mild today so we tried. He has been walking outside holding one hand but today, he pushed me away and walked the length from the door to my himself. And when I said "Come back" he turned around and walked back. ::Tear:: My babies are growing up.

Addison has been teething like crazy lately and as a result has not wanted to eat much of anything. However I will give the girl credit, she likes ice cold cucumbers. Apparently they make the perfect teether. One problem, they aren't high in calories. It's ok though, I'll take it. She actually eats the softest part and chews on the rest. It's progress. Today is the first day that she has shown some interest in food. She actually screamed at the top of her lungs while I was spoon feeding Blake his yogurt or "ogur" as he calls it. So I fed her some. Blake ate the most but she ate enough that I had to open a second container for him. Small victory.

My heart swells with pride over how well they are doing, but at the same time, I am sad. They aren't itty bitties any more. I can't stand it. I find myself telling them, "When you were just over a pound a peice we wanted you to grow, grow, grow, but Mommy would like you to slow down just a little."

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Thankful Thursday...

I am thankful for a lot of things, but I will keep it simple today.

I am thankful for being able to FINALLY make a ponytail with Addison's hair......

Thankful that Jake got home at a semi-decent time tonight, and they kids were still awake (and waiting)

And very thankful that for such an awesome husband/father of my children... He literally came in the door and gave all his attention to these two.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Introducting...Wordless Wednesday !

Wordless Wednesday = Blog post filled with photos with or without short captions. 

Apparently today was funny face day....
Feeding Addison went something like this, sigh...

BUT...she did say two words very clearly today. ^^^^^ "Ball" &  "Cat"

Just for Daddy. Today Training Camp began, Addison & Blake are ready.
PS... someone hold me, they look like big kids here.
We've been practicing our drawing too. Blake is very into it.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Sanity Savers...

Lets face it, this past year we have spent a lot of time inside thanks to RSV lock down, recovery for Addison, heat and rain. Some days the walls feel like they are closing in and other days I am so thankful that we really have no where to be and can spend the day hanging out in our PJ's and watching cartoons or playing games. Don't get me wrong we have therapist in to "visit" at least once a week, every week..but it still gets boring.

Yes we have visitors from time to time. Ya know, grandparents stop by and occasionally a friend or two. We have outings when we can (but really have you tried getting out the door and going some place with two rambunctious toddlers without one having a meltdown or running away?) It's always easier to have people come to us at this point.

Something I look forward to very much is visits with my cousin "B", she has a crazy work schedule but I love the fact that she often makes time for us on her days off. She even helps out with getting out and about with the babies once in awhile too which is AWESOME, she was kind enough to come to my house early and help me get to a family gather, and help wrangle two little ones until Jake could join us. They kids lover her. For the record she is week... yes a whole WEEK younger then me. I have never let her live this down either ;)

Today she came by for a visit. During nap time we sat around talking about old times when we were growing up and the things we used to get into at Grandma's house. It was good for my soul, and I am sure the twins were just as happy to have another person to play with besides Mommy. We even got to see one of my Godsons' and his family while out and about for a few minutes today, that's something we haven't done in a long time! Usually I am not even in their neighborhood, but today I was and they were outside so we were able to say hi and play for a few.

Another thing that also saves me from loosing my fragile mind is going out with my girlfriends. Last night was Ladies Night and I got to go out with four of my close friends for (GASP) adult drinks and dinner. I also may or may not have played a slot machine for the first time, but unfortunately I was not the friend with the lucky horse shoe. However I did enjoy seeing her excitement when she struck the gold. It was priceless. And it's always nice to get out and be one of the girls and get out of mommy mode for a few minutes.

Getting out by myself doesn't happen often because of Jake's work schedule, and God love the man he is way over due for a Guys Day too. But when I need a minute to myself, a bubble bath and a bottle glass of wine are always my go to once the twins are in bed.

Being a Stay At Home Mom, is an amazing blessing and it's not one I take for granted, but it's still important to find that balance for all of us. I am looking forward to getting out and about more as the twins get older and are able to run in opposite directions walk on their own.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Preemie Resources

Support is important in life. Support from people who truly understand what you are going through is absolutely golden. When you are going thru tough times, just hearing someone say "I have been there" makes a world of difference.

Long before A & B were even conceived  I turned to an online community of women who were in my shoes. It started with a group of women in the throws of Infertility and progressed in to a group of unique moms. Mom's of preemies. I don't know what I would have done for the past 18 months without these ladies. They have made me laugh, shared tears, picked me up and brought me back down to life. 

Recently we have formed a close knit group, all of us with preemies around the same age/milestones, etc. From this a few of the mommas started a blog where we could all share our stories and experiences in hope of  helping other families going through the same thing and recently they launched a Facebook page as well. I am lucky enough to be a small part of that.

So, I wanted to take a moment and share this with all my blog readers. Please visit us on Facebook and "Like" us (even if you don't have a preemie, we want to provide resources to all the friends and loved ones of preemies too.) Each day we feature a QOTD where you can gain some insight into our worlds and things you can do for a preemie family. Check back often as we expand and add new features too!

And if you have a few minutes visit the blog as well. Here you'll learn about each of our amazing preemies, how they came into this world, and how they are doing now. As well as other resources that you may find helpful.

Make sure to share both of these pages with your friends as well. Chances are someone you know also knows a preemie parent, friend or family member who can benefit from all of this. I can tell you first hand that find local resources and support is very hard and can be nonexistent. What these ladies have started can fill that gap and lead to more awareness too.

In addition to all of this, I am currently branching out and looking into organizing a local support group for NICU moms, and preemie moms with little ones at home. This is something I have been wanting to do since the babies came home, and I feel like I am finally in a place where I can do this and make a difference. All of this is a small step towards making a difference in someone's life and making more resources readily available.

Rainy Day Friday

It's been so unbelievable hot here lately and we desperately needed the rain to cool things off so I am trying not to complain about the rainy day (that's allowing me to stay inside and avoid the grocery shopping that I really don't want to do) that is keeping us to from doing all the fun things I had planned.

So we started off this rainy day with an extra special Friday treat... BREAKFAST PICNIC in the living room. We enjoyed pancakes, eggs with cheese, yogurt and milk. Blake ate like a champ and Addison was was actually excited to try a few bites of yogurt. I think we may even try that again when they can sit still long enough next Friday.

After breakfast we played for a little bit and practiced our walking (Blake) and putting blocks in a bucket.

We are currently in the middle of a teething nightmare here so a lot of times things are short lived. Addison's molars are coming in and they are making her aboslutly miserable, poor girl. So it didnt' take long before she crawled over to the couch and said "Up" for me to cuddle with her. We cuddled while Blake clung to my leg trying to convince me that he needed to cuddle more and to put Addison down.

 As far as milestones go, these two are all over the place and in to everything. It's exciting and tiring at the same time. Blake is now independently walking while Addison is cruising and taking steps with her push toys. Last weekend Jake and I sat around and laughed hysterically watching Addison and Blake taking turns pushing each other on the dump truck and giggling. And then on Tuesday I got the shock of my life. I was in the shower and the babies were downstairs playing with Jake. He came upstairs to put away laundry and little did either of us know Blake had followed him and decided to come tug on the shower curtain. He busted through the baby gate and came right on up. Note to self: shower before they wake up or during nap time from now on. They cannot be trusted.

Now it's part of their routine, nap time, bedtime and even sometimes in between. They enjoy climbing the stairs and going where ever they please. Their new found independence is pretty amazing, and bittersweet at the same time. They are growing up way too fast.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Getting Back to Blogging.

I've been bad, I know. But in my defense, we've been very busy. I am ready now to commit though. So here we go again.

Follow our family as Addison and Blake continue to grow in this crazy world.

Let's get started with some updates...

May 8th... SURGERY DAY

Addison had her Cleft Palate repaired.... and guess what? SHE CAME OUT OF THE OR EXTUBATED!!!!!! We were over the moon excited about that, that is HUGE for her. And!!!! We only spent 48 hours in the hospital. Her surgeon was absolutely wonderful, and I would recommend him to anyone who needs an Oral-Maxillofacial Surgeon. The time and dedication he took with her was priceless and irreplaceable. He actually set with her in the OR for over an hour because as she started to wake up she was making this "snoring" sound and he wanted to be sure that he could control in and prevent her from being re-intubated! AMAZING. She did so well with tolerating the pain too. Normally they give Cleft kids the hard hitting pain meds but because of the surgeon's knowledge and apprehension of her previous breathing issues and "Preemie Lungs", he insisted on a regimen of Tylenol and Motrin alternating only. All the doctors and nurses commented on how great she looked post op and how they had never seen a baby do so well after a Cleft repair.

Her surgery was also a huge obstacle for me to deal with. As we all know I absolutely hate hospitals, and I DO NOT stay in hospitals by "myself". My mom was gracious enough to keep Blake the day of surgeon and that night (the only time my baby boy stayed overnight somewhere without us, not to mention the only time he and his sister had been separated in almost a year), which allowed Jake to stay with me and Addison. We took turns holding her the first night because she DID NOT want to be left in that crib AT ALL. The second day Jake had to go home with Blake by evening because my mom need to return to work. Which meant, either I had to switch places and leave Addison in the hospital, or I had to face my fear and stay with Addison by myself. Um.... well.... I came home long enough to shower, change clothes and get a few kisses from Blake and then I went back to the hospital where I conquered that fear and stayed with Addison.

The first day we were in a room with another baby girl who had heart surgery, but 24 hours later Addison was moved out to the general Ped's floor an we got our own room, with a private bathroom, and a nice TV. That night I actually got Addison to take a few hours rest in the crib and I was able to at the very least shut my eyes. By the time the residents came in she was ready to go, and they did just that, let us go home.

Blake was very happy to have his sister back, and had lots of questions about her where abouts.

May 26th.... Blake's Homecoming Anniversary

We spent the day together marveling over how far he has come. And that weekend we had a cookout to celebrate both homecomings even though Addison's wasn't until later.

Forth of July!!!! The Holiday I looked forward to since I knew I was pregnant and due in May.

I was looking forward to dressing them in matching outfits and taking lots of pictures and showing them off at my uncle's annual cookout. Last year that didn't happen. Addison was still in the NICU. This year, it was hot as all get out but, all bets were off. There were cute clothes, swimming pools and only one picture of the 4 of us. IT WAS ABSOLUTELY PERFECT in  my mind.

July 18th... Addison's Homecoming Anniversary

We celebrated by cuddling and sharing hugs and kisses, and staying in our pj's in the house where is was nice and cold.

And that is a quick recap of whats been going on. Check back for more updates and see what milestones we are conquering these days. Until then, I will leave you with a picture of my not so baby, toddlers.