Thank you for visiting my blog! If you are visiting because you have experienced a pregnancy or infant loss, let me say that I am so very sorry. I started this blog shortly after our Baby Grady was stillborn on November 12, 2008. Please visit the sidebar below called "Labels" to find the topic in which you are interested, or just read as your heart desires.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Very. Very. Quickly...

I really have no business even being on the computer this morning.



As long as he doesn't drop his heart rate below 80 between now and the time we go get him, he's home bound. We feel extremely blessed and thankful that he has done so well. This has all happened MUCH sooner than we thought but we aren't complaining one bit. Things are not exactly the way I would like them here, but who cares? He won't!

My days at the hospital have been long, and I've been trying to just keep up with routine things and pumping milk every 2-3 hours. That doesn't leave much time for extras. I could have come home right after the hospital yesterday, but we did go see Toy Story 3 and enjoyed it very much! Gib had the idea to go out for one more family dinner, just the four of us. We went to Chili's and had a nice time. It was great to think that the next time we eat out, there will be a car seat sitting at the end of the table...

I lied in my last post. I had every good intention to make it into the baby's room, but it was 11:15pm and Gib talked me into pumping and going to bed. I really was exhausted and that really was the best decision. But I had no choice last night.

It only took me about an hour to pack Grady's things. I sorted cards and momentos from showers, when he died and his first birthday. I did pretty good and just talked to him and prayed while I did it. But when I made it to the crib the tears started to really flow. I packed away his locks of hair, the white gown he wore for his pictures, the blue gown he wore for the time he was with us, and his hospital band that he wore on his ankle. It was hard. Hard. Hard. Hard.

But I'm glad I waited.

Because as I packed Grady's things away, my heart was filled with love for him and sadness over not having him here. But at the same time, my heart was also filled with such hope and love for Matthew. I was truly able to prepare that space for Matthew. I don't understand why Grady couldn't stay here on earth, but I do know that if Grady were here, Matthew wouldn't be. We were done having children after Grady. I don't think there are words to describe how that feels...

Well, I didn't mean to get into all of that today.

The girls have open house today as school starts on Monday for them. We are looking forward to spending some time with Matthew this weekend, loving on him and getting to know him better. Emma Grace still has not held him...I'm wondering how long it will be after we get home that she will be brave enough. I can't wait to see her with him!

Have a great day! It's a super busy one for us!!!


Wednesday, July 28, 2010


Matthew's cranial ultrasound results came back today, and we were encouraged by what we were told. The same radiologist read this scan as well as the last. The radiologist diagnosed his bleed as now just a grade 2, not a grade 2-3. This is encouraging to us as it has not gotten bigger...if anything it has gotten smaller. He will not have another scan before he leaves the hospital. He probably won't have another diagnostic test for a couple of months. This is both unsettling and reassuring. The next test will most likely be something more accurate like a CT scan or an MRI. Dr. L and Suzanne really are not worried. I'm trying not to be either. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you for praying with us and for him!!! Please continue to pray for him as God lays him on your heart.

He really is doing very well. He passed his car seat test today. He had his Hep B vaccine and will have his metabolic screen in the morning. I'm not sure when he will have his circumcision, but it will be soon. They took his feeding tube out today and they are feeding him ad lib every four hours. Basically this means he can take as much as he wants; there is no set number of cc's he has to drink. If I nurse him, they will feed him sooner than the four hours because we don't know exactly how much he is getting from the breast. And when he comes home, I will feed him on demand when he is hungry. He is still maintaining his temperature well. He has to be 48 hours without a drop in his heart rate and he can come home. YIKES! It's so exciting but scary at the same time. We could be looking at only 2-3 days if he does well...

He is only 35 weeks gestational age today. It's amazing how well he has done and how far he has come in only 12 days! I'm so proud and thankful! We are truly blessed! So far, he has proven the "Wimpy White Boy" syndrome wrong! Praise the Lord!!!

We continue to pray that he does well, comes home soon and his bleed continues to get smaller and disappears with no lasting complications.

I'm posting a little earlier tonight because I'm going to tackle the baby's room. I can't call it Grady's room anymore. But I can't call it Matthew's room just yet. It's not ready for him. My sweet NICU friend/nurse, Lori, took care of Matthew today. I told her the task ahead of me, and she sweetly told me all Matthew needs is some diapers, milk and a bassinet in my room. She is so very right, but I need that room to be ready for Matthew when he comes home. It's just the right thing and my heart will not be at rest until it's done.

I have my two week post-op appointment with Dr. Joe tomorrow. The girls and I are going to see Toy Story 3 in the afternoon. This is what Jessica chose to do as our special activity before Baby Matthew comes home. She chose that or bowling. I can't quite throw a bowling ball, I'm afraid, and I figured we could take Matthew bowling later much easier than we could take him to a movie. I'm looking forward to spending some time with them...things are going to be very different when Matthew comes home. Different in a good way...but challenging all the same!


Tuesday, July 27, 2010

No Results Yet. "C" Nursery. Feedings. Meals.

Hello blog and real-life family and friends. I don't have much new news to report tonight.

We have not received the results of Matthew's brain scan yet. I really didn't expect to have them until tomorrow, but that doesn't remove the pins and needles I'm sitting on. I'm really not sure we will be able to tell much so soon, but Dr. L and my friend Suzanne are working tomorrow so we'll see what they both have to say. Not just about the scan but about everything.

I'm not sure if I mentioned last night that Matthew was moved to the "C" nursery yesterday morning. This is where babies go once they are stable and learn to eat and grow. It's the last step before heading out the door. However, Emma Grace spent a month in this nursery because she just couldn't get the hang of eating well. I'm hoping it won't take him that long!

They did put Matthew in clothes and in an open crib last night. He has done well maintaining his temperature. They increased his feedings from 46 cc's to 57 cc's and changed his feeding schedule from every three to every four hours. This is to allow him more time between feedings to rest and be more alert to finish his bottle.

I nursed him again today and he took almost an ounce according to the scale. He did drop his heart rate several times which induces much stress and anxiety in me. I have flashbacks of Emma Grace, and I think I'm permanently scarred from them. I really have a hard time enjoying nursing him or giving him a bottle because I'm so nervous and stressed. And I'm afraid that might carry over to when he is able to come home.


I was so hoping he would be closer to term, not have to go to the NICU and I wouldn't have these such worries. That wasn't in the plan for him or us, though, and I'm still trying to swallow it. Please don't misunderstand me. I AM SO THANKFUL THAT HE IS HERE, ALIVE, BEAUTIFUL AND DOING SO WELL! I just wish things had happened a little differently, maybe even a little easier. But it could be so much worse. I've been down that road before, and I trust the plan God has for us.

I've had a weepy, emotional day. I have Mommy-guilt in all shapes, forms and sizes these days. My hormones are raging, and I'm exhausted. I'm trying not to complain, but some days it's all easier to take than others. The girls have been super sweet and understanding and helpful. I'm so thankful for them.

And one last thing before I sign off... If you know me in real life and want to bring us a meal when Matthew comes home, please send me an email and let me know. My friend, Amy Ellen, is going to set up a web link for people to sign up for meals. I don't want to assume that someone wants to bring a meal and then make them feel obligated to do so. Unless you tell me otherwise, I will not forward the link to you.

I am so thankful for the cards, emails, phone calls, texts, gifts and offers to help that we've received already. We have so many people who love us, and it means so much to us. Thank you!

Please keep the prayers coming for our sweet baby boy. Pray for that bleed to resolve itself with no lasting complications and that he will learn to eat well so we can bring him home and love on him as much as we want!


Monday, July 26, 2010

Change of Plans

This is a quick post tonight.

During my visit with Matthew today, I learned the next ultrasound of his brain will be in the morning, Tuesday, instead of Friday. Another doctor is on call and wrote the order today. I have mixed, conflicting feelings about this because Dr. L was adamant that the longer we wait, the more accurate the results. But, at the same time, I have to admit it will be nice to see what's going inside that cute little head of his. Hopefully nothing but shrinking of the bleed!

I nursed him again and he did great. We weighed him before and after he ate, and he took a whole ounce from me! I know that doesn't sound like much, but that's the best he's nursed so far. He had several dips in his heart rate today which is normal but very nerve wracking. He had one while I was nursing him and two while he was sleeping earlier in the day. Full term babies probably do this, they just aren't on a monitor to see it. They increased his feedings again, now to 46 cc's every three hours.

Have I mentioned how much Matthew LOVES his paci? Well, he does. Following in his oldest sister's shoes I'm afraid!

I took some cute pictures of him, but I'm too tired to get the camera and download them. I don't know if I'm just lazy or worn out. I will get them posted because he was showing off his legs and feet. And as I was holding him today, I thought he looked like Grady for the first time.

I'll let you know the results of his scan as soon as I get them. I'm hoping and praying for some good news! Thanks for praying with us!

And one more thing. The nurse practitioner told me to bring in some clothes for him as they want to wean him to an open crib without the heat. So, tonight, I got Grady's clothes out to wash and dry for his little brother. Luckily, the girls were very excited to help, and I didn't have too much time to think about it. I just had to do it because I won't have time tomorrow before I go to the hospital. (I'm getting my hair cut and colored...WHOOPEE!) Tackling Grady's cards and momentos this week is going to be another story with much more emotion.



Sunday, July 25, 2010

Sunday Update

Today was a little better than yesterday.

We've been storming the gates of heaven with prayer for our baby boy. The truth of it all is that it is completely out of our control. God is the only one who can heal Matthew. I know that.

We went to church today because I thought it might be my last Sunday going for a while. Hopefully Matthew will be coming home soon...

As you know, I love the music at church. Well, we didn't get up until 8am and were late getting there. We missed the music except for the end of one song. The verse that stood out at me was, "Healing is in His hands". Yes, it is. I'm trying to remind myself of that and believe it with my all my heart. The only thing we can do is wait and pray. And pray. And pray!

A quick funny story... Dr. L said they would scan him again in five days. Well, five days from Friday is Wednesday, not Thursday. So, I marched myself out to the nurse's station and told him that. He proceeded to tell me it really is better to wait a full week, but he was compromising with Thursday in case Matthew was ready to go home. However, in the course of our conversation, he tells me that the longer we wait, the more accurate the results of the scan. He said that Friday would be better. I asked if it were his child, would he want to wait until Friday? His answer was yes.

Sooooo, Matthew's next scan will be Friday, not Thursday. Gib and Matthew's nurse were laughing at me when I went back into his room. I left with such gusto and came back defeated, buying Matthew another day in the NICU.

I've been reading a few stories online about grade 2-3 bleeds, and I've been somewhat encouraged by what I've read. Many of the bleeds resolved themselves without further complications or side effects. That is our prayer for Matthew's also. That it will get smaller and resolve on it's own without the need for further intervention.

Thank you for the sweet emails you've sent. If you've called me, I honestly just haven't been up for talking. I'm still trying to digest and process it all. Thank you for your concern, though, and your prayers are SO VERY MUCH APPRECIATED!!!

In Christ, there's always hope. I'm clinging to the verse at the top of my blog.

When we visited today, he nursed very well. He was awake for a long time and did great. We were still there for his 6pm feeding, and I attempted to give him a bottle just in case I have to supplement some once he's home. He didn't do quite as good with that for me. The nurse had to help him finish. They have all sorts of tricks they do to get those babies to eat. He finished his bottle, and I left before I got in trouble for being in there during shift change.

They increased his feedings to 43 cc's every three hours and stopped his IV fluids. His IV is still in place since he's a hard stick, and I'm not sure how long they will leave it. He's still doing great with no oxygen, peeing and pooping like a champ. He's just a sweet little pumpkin. It breaks my heart to leave him every day.

I drove home from the hospital tonight and did just fine. It's amazing that I just had major surgery 9 days ago and have been only taking Tylenol and Motrin for pain. I'm certainly not complaining because driving gives me new freedom. This week will be crazy with Gib going back to work and visiting Matthew. It's the last week before the girls go back to school, and I want to try to do at least one fun thing with them. I can't tell you what angels they have been this whole summer and how lucky I am to have them as my daughters. I'm so proud of them and have no words for how much I love them.

Thanks again for everything! Especially the prayers! Keep 'em coming!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

One to Two Percent

*WARNING: This is NOT a happy post!*

Statistics suck.

Really, they do.

Especially when you're the statistic.

When Grady was stillborn, I learned that 1-2% of pregnancies end in stillbirth. Doesn't seem like much unless you're the 1 or 2 out of 100 that it happens to.

Just yesterday, I had a long talk with the neonatalogist, Dr. L, who took such great care of Emma Grace. We were talking about the risk of brain bleeds in babies Matthew's gestation.


Again, doesn't sound too bad. Unless you're the 1 or 2.

Well friends, Matthew is the 1 or 2. We found out today that he has a unilateral, grade 2-3 brain bleed.

Dr. L did not seem very concerned about this. I trust this man. He sees this all the time and has a preemie follow-up clinic where he follows premature babies for a while after discharge.

The nurse called me today and told me Dr. L had the results of the scan, and he would talk to us when we got there. Can you say anxiety out the roof?!?!? I knew something was up and physically felt sick.

Dr. L walked into the room and said hi to Gib. He then proceeded to say, "I'm going to tell your wife some news that's going to stress her out but is not very stressing to me". Dr. L is a straight-shooter if I've ever seen one. I learned that with Emma Grace, and I so very much appreciate that. Of course, I cried when he told us. He was as encouraging as he could be. He said he is not going to go home and worry about my baby. He said it's good that it's only on one side. It's good that it's only grade 2-3. Bilateral and/or grade 4 is the worst. They will scan Matthew again on Thursday to see if the bleed has changed. We are hoping that it shrinks and doesn't get bigger.

What does this mean long-term for him? I'm not really sure. Only time will tell, but the little research I've done says it can lead to cerebral palsy, mental retardation and learning disabilities.

Of course, my mama heart and Gib's daddy heart aren't doing well with this news. Gib said tonight that he feels like "the wind has been sucked out of my sail". This sick feeling just won't leave me. All of us are worried. Jessica asked me if he was going to live. Emma Grace said he needed to get a new brain. I'm just truly hoping and praying that this is something we will look back on in years to come and see it as a huge bump in the road, and he will be fine.

I know God is in control. I've been praying almost non-stop this afternoon/evening and will continue to. He is the giver of life. The healer. The comforter. Our all in all. In Him we will trust. He smiled and gave Matthew life, and He will continue to carry him and us through whatever comes our way.

BUT...we're human and can't help but worry.

And I can't help but be really mad. While I know the news could be much worse...our baby is here...he's alive...he's doing amazingly well considering his gestational age and the fact that he's a boy. I just feel like we can't catch a break. Something always has to be wrong it seems. I've had my guard up since Matthew's birth, waiting for the bomb to drop.

And today it did.


PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE pray with us that when they scan him again on Thursday that it has gotten smaller, not bigger. Shoot, we could even pray that it's gone all together. That might be a stretch. But all things are possible in Him.

In other news, they increased his feedings today to 35cc every three hours and will go up more tomorrow. I have such a hard time imagining he can eat that much considering everyone says your stomach is as big as your fist. I promise his little fist isn't that big! But I trust the formula they just rattles my nerves because I think he might throw it all up anytime. Then I worry about him aspirating if he's on his back. And so on, and so forth. NICU is just one of those nerve wracking experiences. Anyway, back to the update... He is tolerating his feedings amazingly well. He took all of his feedings by mouth yesterday, and he was tired from it today. He slept through most of his 9am feeding and had to be tubed the rest of that one and the others until tonight. I tried to nurse him at 3pm, and he was having no part of it. I talked to his nurse a little bit ago and she said he took his whole 9pm feeding, but he took it very slowly and is just really tired. This isn't unusual with preemies. They will have a super great day and then be pooped from all they do. Hopefully tomorrow he will be more awake and ready to eat! His IV nutrition was discontinued today and he's just on regular IV fluids. He did have to get a new IV, but Suzanne texted me this morning to say she got it on the first stick, no crying and it looked good. He had a major blowout this evening while I went to find a friend who came to visit. Jessica assisted the nurse in cleaning it up and apparently gagged the whole time. Don't think I'm gonna get much help from her with his dirty diapers at home, do you?

That's all for tonight. Please pray for him. Thank you.


Friday, July 23, 2010

One Week Old

I wasn't going to blog tonight because it's late. I have to keep it short, though, because I'm due to pump at midnight and then I'm hittin' the hay. Boy, am I ready!!!

Today, sweet Matthew turned one week old. He had a great day! He has taken all of his feedings by mouth, and he nursed twice while I was visiting! He is digesting his milk well and has gained a bit of his weight back. He weighed 5 lbs, 13.4 oz this morning. They have turned his IV nutrition down further; hopefully he will be off of that soon. He did have the ultrasound of his head this morning, but the results are not back yet.

Getting ready to nurse today. Waving hello to all of you!

Jessica held him again today, and Emma Grace almost did. I truly think she's afraid of dropping him. I'm trying not to push her, but I'm also trying to encourage her that she won't be alone and we will help her. She will do it when she is ready...even if it's when he comes home.

Jessica changed her first diaper today!

Daddy held him the most today which was great for him. We were only supposed to have him up for an hour, but it turned out that he was out of his bed for THREE! They got an admission of a sick baby and the nurses were so busy helping out that no one came to take him from Gib. For some reason, they moved Matthew to his own little room off from the main nursery. The nurses can hear him and his monitors, and it is SO nice to have the privacy when we visit. Plus it is much more quiet for him in there.

It broke my heart, though, because when he got back in his bed after I nursed him, he was wide awake, looking around. And left all alone. Poor baby. It literally took everything in me to leave, but I had to because it was shift change and no parents are allowed in the unit.

Another reason I wanted to post tonight was to share this amazing rainbow that we saw on the way home from the hospital. This brought me such peace and left me speechless.


Thursday, July 22, 2010

Matthew. 5 Days Old. 34 Weeks.

Our sweet Matthew had a great day yesterday. The day he turned 5 days old. The day I would have been 34 weeks pregnant with him.

As I mentioned in yesterday's post, he took a bottle at 9am. He took another at 12pm. Each was 14 cc's, almost half an ounce.

On the way to the hospital, I called the nurse to let her know we might be a bit late for the 3pm feeding. While on the phone, she dropped another shocker...

They took him off of his oxygen around noon yesterday.

He loves to pull things out, and apparently the O2 was blowing in his eyeballs. They took it off and he hasn't needed it since. If his work of breathing becomes labored or too fast, they will put it back on him. For now, all is good.

I was able to put him to the breast yesterday. We used a nipple shield to make it easier for him, but once he was skin to skin with me and latched on, he got so comfy that he fell asleep. The nurse tube fed him while he was at the breast and in my arms. Toward the end of the feeding, out of the blue, he started sucking and swallowing. He only did it about 10 times, but he paced himself well and didn't drop his heart rate once. Needless to say, it warmed my heart and felt great to hold my baby so close.

The girls chose to go to the pool with Sidney, so it was just me and Gib at the bedside. That won't happen too often, and I have to say it was so nice. Only two people can be at the bedside at one time, so one of us is usually with the girls. On the rare occasions that we've been together for a short time, the girls stay in the waiting room and it's a bit nerve-wracking for me.

The three of us.

Daddy and his "little man".

This is how we left him...happy, sleeping on his tummy and sucking on his paci.

I called this morning to check on him, and he's doing good. A good friend of mine from the NICU and the bereavement committee, Illana, is taking care of him. I love it when I already know his nurses. I've met some great new ones, but the familiarity of someone brings me great peace of mind.

Matthew still has no O2. They were going to recheck his bilirubin this morning, but I forgot to ask the results. I guess it was okay since he isn't under bili lights. He is doing a good job of maintaining his temperature without much help at all from the warming bed. His status has been decreased from critical to intermediate. They tube-fed him last night so he could rest. He took a bottle at 9am but Illana said he got really tired. She thinks alternating every other feeding for now would be good, one tube and one by mouth. They are watching his IV closely because he is a hard stick. He is still on IV nutrition until his feedings reach a certain amount by mouth. His feedings were increased today to 20cc's every three hours. The nurses have not heard a heart murmur the last few days, but if it returns Cardiology will consult and see what's going on. He will have a brain scan tomorrow to check for a brain bleed. Probably my two biggest worries right now are the chance of brain bleed and risk of NEC. So far things seem to be going well, though.

Many of you have asked how I'm doing. I could very easily write a post entitled "Mad. Sad. Glad." And I might just do it. I've been on an emotional roller coaster, partly normal postpartum and partly emotions from our last two birth experiences. It gets all jumbled at times. Physically, I think I'm doing great. I'm getting around surprisingly well. I still have pain but try to take the minimum amount of pain medicine to get me through, which at times has just been Tylenol and Motrin. My milk has come in which is a huge blessing. The pump and I have become reacquainted with one another and it's definitely a love-hate relationship!

Many of you have called or emailed about meals for our family. Since our schedule is crazy with visiting at the hospital, etc, we have decided to wait and ask for meals when Matthew comes home from the hospital. That's when we will really need them with having a new baby at home, school starting soon for the girls, and Gib working full-time & going back to school.

I will update again soon on how things are going. As always, thanks for the prayers and support! I love you all!


Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Hey, It's Good...

... to be back home again.

Sort of.

(Do you know that song by John Denver? That's not just some random introduction I chose!)

Anyway, I got home from the hospital yesterday a little after 5pm. It was such an emotional time and very bittersweet. This was the third time I've left that hospital without a baby in my arms...but at least there is a baby to go back and visit and eventually bring home.

I've been down this road with Emma Grace, so I knew leaving the hospital would be hard. I know this hospital stay won't be near as long as Emma Grace's, but it's still so hard to leave my baby and be separated after being together for so long.

Emma Grace was very sweet in trying to comfort me while Gib and Jessica were getting a parking sticker from Dr. Joe's office. I was crying in the front seat and she said, "Mommy, at least you know Baby Matthew is safe". Yes, I do. Then she unbuckled her seat belt and said, "I want a hug and a kiss". Well, you know I have plenty of those to pass around!

It reminded me so much of when we left Emma Grace at the hospital. The Publix pharmacy was closing, but I called them and told them I had just been discharged from the hospital and was on my way with my prescriptions. They stayed open until we got there (can you say super nice?!?). As Jessica and I waited in the car and I was crying over Emma Grace, she said, "It's okay Mommy. Emma Grace will come home soon", then proceeded to give me a hug and kiss. At that point I didn't know if Emma Grace would come home or not.

It is so nice just to be here, but I have to admit that I'm sad my pregnancy is over already. It was great to be in my own bed next to my hubby last night, but I kept wishing I could feel Matthew squirming inside of me.

The girls haven't had much to do with me since I've been home. They've been playing hard with BFF, Sidney, next door. But it actually is a huge help to me that they are entertained and happy. They come in and check on me, give me hugs and kisses and are off again. They just love the idea that I'm home. :) Jessica told me this morning that she slept better last night, and of course, Emma Grace had to agree. I'm so glad to bring them a bit more security, even though they did fine with their Daddy while I was away.

I got up with Gib at 5am to pump (he has to work until 1:30 today) and then promptly went back to sleep. I woke up at 7:30 but couldn't move, so I closed my eyes again and didn't wake up until 9:30 when the girls got up. I couldn't believe it, but it felt so good to sleep!

I called to check on Matthew, and he is doing GREAT! They decreased his nasal cannula flow from 3L to 2L and he seems to be tolerating it well. His feedings were increased to 8cc's every 3 hours yesterday, but they probably will increase them more today. They tried to put a PICC line in him yesterday but couldn't get it (this is a deep vein IV so he doesn't have to be stuck so many times). Now that he's eating a little more, they might not do one at all. He got his first bath last night and weighed in, still, at 5 lbs, 11 oz.

And here's the really exciting news...


The nurse said he was extremely fussy and acted like he wanted to eat. She decided to try it, and her words were, "He took it like he's been doing it all his life". He only dropped his heart rate once while feeding which is pretty common, but he recovered on his own quickly. I'm going to try to get there for his 3pm feeding, and if he's doing well, we are going to try to put him to the breast.

In other really exciting news...

Jessica held him for the first time yesterday, and he opened his eyes for the first time while in her arms! It was absolutely precious, and the smile on her face couldn't have been bigger. She was beyond herself with excitement as that was one of the big questions she would ask me each time I visited him in the NICU, "Did he open his eyes?" The fact that he did it with her made her so proud. She looked at me and said, "I like this baby!"

Gib got to hold him for the first time, too. It was funny, though. I was pumping at the bedside while Gib was there, and I actually felt like I was intruding on a very special moment in time between the two of them. I could tell it was a bit emotional for Gib, although he didn't cry like I did. He told me last night how much he enjoyed his time with Matthew.

Emma Grace opted out of holding him for now. Her words were, "I want to hold him on the carpet". I'm not sure if she thinks she might drop him or what, but I'm not going to push her. She will hold him when she's ready.

This baby boy is not going to be spoiled...he's gonna be "ruint"! (That's a southern form of ruined in case you didn't know!)

That's about all the update I have for now. I'm still going to do a post of pictures soon. Keep the prayers coming...they're working!!!


Monday, July 19, 2010

Long-awaited Update

Wow! What a whirlwind the last few days have been!

Internet connection has been horrible here in the hospital. This is the first time I've been able to get on since Friday night after Matthew was born. I'm excited to be able to give you an update as I can tell by my visitor counter that you've all been curious. :)

Off and on last week after I was admitted, I continued to have breakthrough contractions despite the Procardia I was taking every 4 hours. The couple of times it happened, subq Terb quieted my uterus. Mid-morning Friday I started having more contractions that just felt like braxton-hicks. It was almost time for my Procardia, so my nurse waited to see if it would work. Around 1pm, I had a contraction accompanied by some pressure. It concerned me, but I thought I would wait and see if it happened again. A few minutes later, as I had more contractions, I had a bit of pain in my lower middle abdomen. The pain was not as bad as it was the previous Saturday that had us all concerned, but it was pain nonetheless. I told my nurse, who promptly called Dr. Joe.

I'm so glad I had the foresight NOT to eat the lunch on my tray or the ice cream Lori brought me...

Dr. Joe showed up in his street clothes and lab coat. (This is an important detail for later) He didn't even look at my strip...instead he just looked at me and said "It's time to get you down to L&D and start you on some Mag". I was not excited but knew it was the right thing to do. My nurse and I packed up my things and headed down.

I had a special friend with me from my bereavement committee who stayed with me and loved on me through the whole thing, even through delivery. She requested some Zofran from Dr. Joe so I wouldn't throw up while getting the medicine (I'm a terrible puker!), and before we started the Mag she let me jump in the shower to VERY QUICKLY get clean. I will be forever grateful for that act of kindness! THANKS K!

They started my bolus of Mag at 3pm. My contractions remained untouched. They started my maintenance dose and by 3:30 called Dr. Joe. I was banging out contractions every 3 minutes or so. They were becoming very painful for me, but not in the traditional sense of labor. By the time they wheeled me out for my c-section, I was holding abdomen with each one because it seriously felt like I was going to rip apart.

Dr. Joe came after being paged, and the first thing I noticed was that he was now wearing his scrubs with his lab coat. I said, "Ohhhh Dr. Joe, you changed your clothes". I knew he was planning to deliver at that point. Why else would he change into scrubs at 3:45 on a Friday afternoon???

He looked at my strip of contractions and said, "It's time to deliver this baby". My heart sank, but if I'm honest, I felt a bit of relief, too. So started the phone calls, texts and chaos. Gib was at home, 45 minutes away, and had to get the girls next door and ended up getting stuck in traffic. But he DID make it on time! I called my friend, Suzanne, to come back to the hospital as she had just recently left her shift at the hospital. I have to include this, though. She had called me earlier in the afternoon and told me she was showered and ready for a birthday party. I told her to HUSH...we were NOT having a birthday party that day. Boy, was I wrong! Dr. Joe's nurse, Nanci, came back to assist him with the c-section, my friend Lori was already working in NICU that day and it seemed all was set. We had to wait on the anesthesiologist to finish a case, so I didn't get wheeled into the OR until around 5:45pm.

It was very emotional in that OR. There were tears of joy this time, though, instead of tears of sorrow. The same OR tech was there who worked Grady's delivery. She remembered me and couldn't believe I was back. I was thankful she was there because apparently she cried as hard as everyone else when Grady was stillborn. Before he started the surgery, I asked Dr. Joe if he could still operate through my sobs. I knew when I heard Matthew cry I was going to lose it. Well, friends, I was crying long before I heard him. But his cry was such a beautiful sound to my ears...and my heart.

When they told me he weighed 6 lbs, 2 oz, I couldn't believe it. Just that morning, I'd had a BPP where Matthew scored 8/8 and she estimated him to weigh 5 lbs, 2 oz. I thought this strange since two weeks ago he'd been estimated at 5 lbs, 3 oz. But I attributed it to a different tech, u/s, etc. I'm glad he started at such a good size, though, as it will definitely work in his favor.

Dr. Joe had held him up over the drape for me, but Suzanne brought him to see me. I soaked up his soft skin and chubby cheeks for the few seconds I had with him. He started to look dusky so Suzanne handed him over to the NICU team and off he went.

They wheeled me to recovery.

To the same spot where I was with Grady. (I didn't ask if I was in the same OR, but it looked strangely familiar...)

I started crying and they insisted they wanted to move me. I wouldn't let them. In a way it made me feel like Grady was a part of his brother's delivery. It was confirmation and reassurance that he is always present in everything we do...including welcoming his baby brother into this world. That was the spot where I first saw and held Grady. Matthew had already gone to the NICU, but I was able to reflect on both experiences.

Both are equally special in my heart.

They wheeled me to NICU on my way to my room Friday night. I got to put my hand on Matthew and get a good look at him. I've seen him for three days now, and it's hard for me to believe he's here. It's hard to believe that he's ours. And it's hard to believe that he's alive.

He is doing really well. He was on CPAP, but they have switched him to a high-flow nasal cannula. They started feeding him through a tube yesterday, but I've only been able to produce a little colostrum. My milk hasn't come in yet, though today it's starting. I've been very frustrated with this because it came in very fast after Emma Grace was born. Today, I signed a consent for donor milk for the next two days because his gut needs to be every so slightly stimulated each day. Breast milk significantly reduces the risk of NEC and the donor milk is completely safe and pasteurized. It's only until my milk comes which I hope will be tomorrow or Wednesday at the latest.

He will have a scan of his brain Friday to check for a brain bleed. We continue to pray he does not have one and his scan will be clear. His chest x-ray looked better this morning. He lost weight which actually is a good thing for his lungs. This morning he weighed 5 lbs, 11 oz. Suzanne said she heard a heart murmur, but we would watch it and see if it clears up. His bilirubin level is up but not high enough for phototherapy for jaundice. He is on IV nutrition called Hyperal and is receiving lipids (fats) through his IV also. His blood cultures have all come back negative so his antibiotics have been stopped. He has had some episodes where he has significantly dropped his heart rate; they are concerning but not alarming. It's pretty common for preemies to do that. He's probably refluxing, but that will be closely watched also.

Emma Grace and Jessica met him Saturday morning. Jessica is absolutely and completely in love with him. Emma Grace loves him, too, but is still warming up to him. I think she's realizing her baby status has been taken away. Jessica would have stood at his bedside all day with her hand on his head and the other on his bottom. Lori showed her how to do that to comfort him and she didn't want to stop. Jessica, Emma Grace and Gib went down for his first poopy diaper on Saturday. I was in the middle of dealing with trapped air in my chest and drinking some concoction of milk, ginger ale and sugar. I know it sounds gross, but believe it or not, it worked...and I HATE ginger ale!

I got to hold Matthew for the first time this morning.

It was wonderful!

And wonderfully emotional.

Of course my heart leaped with joy, but I cried when Suzanne first put him in my arms.

I have only held two newborns since Grady. It was very surreal that I was holding MY newborn. And he is alive. The hormones have kicked in and with it the emotions. I am SO happy. So happy to have an alive baby. So proud of Matthew. But in so many ways, Matthew's birth has brought about grief for Grady again. I would be lying if I said my tears were all happy tears. We've all called Matthew Grady the last few days, some of us more than once. As I was filling out the papers for NICU visitation, there were two columns. One for brothers and one for sister. I cried as I left the brothers column blank.

Suzanne worked last night and sat at Matthew's bedside with me until midnight. She let me cry and talk. She validated my feelings and didn't tell me to just "be happy". She said, "When you feel sad, remember the happy things". There are lots of happy things to reflect on amidst the sadness. Happy and sad CAN co-exist. I so appreciated that because I don't feel that any of what I'm experiencing emotionally is abnormal. Those of you who've been there can probably relate all too well.

I am coming home tomorrow. It's very bittersweet for me. I am looking forward to being home with Gib and the girls, but it's going to break my heart to leave Matthew here. This will be the third time I've left this hospital without a baby in my arms. But at least we have a baby to come visit and eventually take home this time. The next few weeks will be a challenge with driving to and from the hospital, especially when Matthew is ready and able to start nursing. I won't be able to be here for all of his feedings. The girls will be sad that they aren't going to be able to visit every day. Gib is going back to work and so the chaos begins. It's all okay though. I'm really not complaining. It will all work out. We just continue to pray for Matthew to grow and get strong so he can come home and be with us. The chaos and confusion are temporary and will be very well worth it!

Thanks for checking on us and mostly for praying for us. Please continue to pray for Matthew. We are so thankful and blessed that he's doing so well so far.

Look for an update of pictures to come soon. I don't know how to get them from the camera onto Gib's computer here. I can't remember what time I started this post, but it's now 8:05pm. I'm off to eat my dinner, pump, go to the NICU to visit baby boy and catch up with an old friend from nursing school who is my nurse tonight. Hopefully, you'll be hearing from me more frequently.

Love and blessings,

Friday, July 16, 2010



6 pounds, 2 ounces

18 inches long

Born at 6:37 pm.

A BIG BOY for 33 weeks and 2 days!

He is in the NICU on CPAP and doing well at the moment. He may still need to be intubated, but only time will tell. It has been a very emotional, trying day, and I'm exhausted. Physically, I'm doing well. Just normal post c-section pain. We are so blessed and thankful to have an alive, breathing baby. Jessica and Emma Grace will meet him tomorrow. I literally heard the smile in Jessica's voice tonight when I talked to her. I will post more details later, but this was definitely the day the Lord had planned for him to enter this world.

Please pray for:

* his breathing to be easy
* his lungs to continue maturing
* no brain bleed
* no NEC (necrotizing enterocolitis)
* no other complications
* anything else I didn't think of or that the Lord may lay on your heart


Thursday, July 15, 2010

Short Update

It's short but not sweet. And I'm apologizing for any typos I miss because my hands are shaking like I have Parkinson's from all the Terbutaline I've had.

Basically, I was VERY encouraged yesterday because the Procardia they gave me yesterday quieted my uterus amazingly well. However at 4am this morning, I started contracting frequently right through it. They gave me some oral Terbutaline twice between my scheduled doses of Procardia. I continue to contract. I have had subq (in the arm) Terbutaline twice which has not helped very much either. Dr. Joe feels that if the subq Terb in my arms doesn't help, the Terb pump in my leg might not do that much better. He is talking about a low-dose of Mag Sulfate to be started later today. I'm dreading it. Literally dreading it. But hopefully a low dose will be okay and do the trick, and I might not feel so horrible on it.

I did get my second dose of Celestone yesterday at 5pm to help Dumplin's lungs. That's good. Our goal now is to make it to next Wednesday the 21st. Dr. Joe has me TENTATIVELY scheduled for a c-section that morning at 7:30am. He said we will cancel it if I'm doing great; otherwise that's the day. But, that day may come sooner if my uterus doesn't straighten up and behave.


I'm so frustrated and MAD at my body. I'm HATING my body in fact! I know there are plenty of you reading who have been there yourself.

There are a slew of emotions whirling around in me right now. Too many to write about, and truthfully I don't want to write about them.

As I just typed this, I got my third subq Terbutaline shot. Probably time to say goodbye before my hands shake so bad I knock the computer off my lap.

Please pray these meds work and Dumplin' holds off until next Wed. Every day he can be inside of me helps him to have a better outcome. But as always, God's will. Not our's.


Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Again, Not What I Expected

Things aren't terrible, but they're not great. Definitely not what I expected when I was admitted yesterday.

I was admitted around 1pm yesterday, and within the first 30 minutes I was on the monitor, I had 12 contractions. Granted, they weren't real contractions, but they don't even want someone to have more than 6 braxton-hicks per hour. I was well above that. From 2-3pm, I had 19 contractions; 3-4pm, 14; and 4-5pm, 7. Those numbers only got better because I was given oral Terbutaline to help them subside.

Starting at 5pm, they gave me three shots of Terbutaline in my arm. This did the trick, and my uterus was calm for a while. Dr. Joe was happy with the results. I got another oral dose at 8pm, and we waited.

I had the nurse put me back on the monitor at 2am because I was feeling more contractions. I have contracted all night. Got another three shots between 4-5am that didn't work. They have just given me some Procardia. If I don't do well on this, either because it will drop my BP too low or because it doesn't stop the contractions, Dr. Joe is talking Mag Sulfate. I've only heard horror stories about this medicine, but I'm most certainly willing to try it.

The concern, again, is that with all of these contractions, my uterus being so big and stretching so much, that it could possibly rupture. I'm extremely glad I'm here, but it's very frustrating, too. You see, these contractions are nothing new for me. I've been having them, this frequent and this strong, for weeks. But now that I'm here, they're a big deal. And I understand why. I'm just frustrated. I thought I was coming just as a precaution. What was my norm has now turned into a medical event.

I didn't sleep a wink last night between contractions, this crick in my neck, thinking about Dumplin' being born even earlier than 36 weeks, and worrying about the possibility of getting Mag today, or soon. I really want Dumplin' to make it one more week to 34 weeks. "Wimpy white boys" don't always do that great in the NICU. Dr. Joe has the same goal in mind, but he will not wait if a more serious situation arises. The main goal right now is for me to get my second dose of steroids for Dumplin' today at 5pm. These help his lungs mature a little faster.

I'm trying very hard to find the positives in this because they are always there. I'm 33 weeks today. I'm here being monitored closely. I'm here if an emergency does arise. My family is wonderfully supportive and taken care of. My baby is still alive. I believe and trust in a God who is in control and has a plan for both me and Dumplin'.

Thank you so much for your sweet comments and prayers. Internet connection here at the hospital is TERRIBLE. I've only been able to log onto my email once, on only one of my accounts. The internet connection apparently does not like Yahoo. So, if you've emailed me and haven't heard back, please don't think I'm ignoring you.

Thanks for checking in and praying for us!!!


Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Hi Ho, Hi Ho...'s off to high-risk I go!

I'll be heading to the hospital today until Dumplin' arrives. This is a precautionary measure. And while I'm sad and don't look forward to staring at the same four walls, I'm so thankful to have a doctor who is conservative and on top of things.

Saturday, I took the girls to Walmart to get school supplies. Now let me just pause here and say that I never do these kinds of things early, but Jessica was persistent so off we went. And what a blessing that I have already purchased Emma Grace's uniforms for the school year, too. It's taken care of and Gib won't have to deal with it. Praise the Lord for His blessings, big and small!

Anyway, as we were casually taking our time in the store, I had the worst pain in my abdomen. It literally felt like my uterus was splitting right down the middle. It was so painful that I could hardly put one foot in front of the other. We bought what we had, and Jessica helped get everything in the car. Once I sat down I felt a bit better, but it continued to hurt. I drove the 15 minute drive home and promptly went to bed, where I stayed for about three hours. The pain subsided, and I didn't call Dr. Joe. The pain has come back once at almost the same intensity but not quite. The last couple of days, I've had twinges here and there of the pain and pulling sensation.

So, at my appointment with Dr. Joe yesterday, I thought I was in the clear. Dumplin' produced a great heart rate strip for his NST, and my cervix looked great on ultrasound.

But then I told him about the pain.

His demeanor changed, and I could see (almost hear) his wheels turning. But I wasn't prepared for what came next...

I measured 37cm yesterday which isn't too terribly big considering I'll be 33 weeks tomorrow. But I am big, Dumplin' is big and VERY active. I have LOTS and LOTS of braxton-hicks contractions (the practice ones) with some real ones mixed in. Dr. Joe is concerned with all of those things, combined with the pain I'm having in my middle uterus, that my uterus might rupture. I'm at risk for this because I have an old fashioned, classical incision on my uterus from Emma Grace being born so emergently at 25 weeks.

Dr. Joe looked around my uterus with ultrasound and saw nothing alarming, but he sure did keep feeling and poking around on my abdomen. I asked him if it felt okay, and his response was, "Yeah, it's okay." I got the feeling that something he felt was a bit off, but he didn't want to alarm me, too. I feel like if it was great he would have said so. It wasn't long after that he mentioned the hospital.

He told me that if I had called him from where I live (45 minutes from the hospital) and told him the kind of pain I was having, he would have "freaked out". He said with a uterine rupture that far away, there's no chance of saving the baby and it's very dangerous for me, too. If I was in the hospital parking lot, it would still be too far away. But if I'm on the high risk unit, "there's a fighting chance if something were to happen".

So, off to high-risk I go sometime today. I think if I had not had the girls with me yesterday, Dr, Joe might have gone ahead and admitted me. He didn't give me a specific time to be there, and I'm not in a hurry. I haven't packed. Instead, last night I spent time with my family, got the laundry caught up, and made lists of how to do things around here for Gib and the girls. Things are not perfect and exactly in order the way I would like them to be for the next few weeks, but I've had to step back and examine my priorities. And a perfectly clean, orderly house is NOT at the top. Dumplin' isn't going to know, or care, if things aren't perfect in his room. As long as he has milk, diapers and a soft place to lay his head, that's all he needs. Who cares about the rest, right?

I cried lots of tears yesterday at the thought of being away, and I know more are to come today. I was on bedrest for 12 days with Emma Grace. The days aren't so bad because of visitors that come and go, but the nights are long and lonely. My family is sad, but they understand this is the best thing to keep me and Dumplin' safe.

I was in the nursery last night (which is a TOTAL mess right now because of a mega fort the girls built) showing Jessica things that had to be washed, and I looked into the crib. There lay Grady's white gown, his hospital bands, the bag with his locks of hair, and the gown he wore during my time with him. I put my hand on the side of the crib and tearfully said to Jessica, "This is what we're trying to keep from happening again. We want an alive baby to bring home this time." She and I hugged and agreed it would all be worth it.

We would so very much appreciate your prayers. Some specifics to pray for are:

--Dumplin' stays put until his August 4th c-section date
--Dumplin's lungs will mature
--my uterus won't rupture and there will be no other complications
--peace and survival for Gib and the girls while I'm away

We rest in the fact that this is God's plan and His will for me and Dumplin' right now. Thank you so much for your prayers and support!


Monday, July 12, 2010

Road Runners

This is, hopefully, the first of several posts to come this week. I have so much I want to write about but am limited in the time that I can sit comfortably at the computer without becoming lightheaded and dizzy.


I mentioned a couple of weeks ago in a "Tidbit" post that Jessica and Gib were going to run a 5K (3.1 miles) on July 10th. They did it, and they did GREAT! (especially Jessica!) They ran around our neighborhood in the evenings to train, and Jessica often motivated her Daddy to get out there and run.

They weren't running to beat a certain time; they were just running for fun. Emma Grace and I were there to support them and take pictures. My friend and neighbor, Jenny, also came with her boys to support them...Thanks Jenny!

Before the race.

Waiting for the "go".

My road runners as they approached the finish line. Pardon the random stranger in front of Gib.

Crossing the finish line.

Worn out but proud.

There was an awards ceremony afterwards. Here's a pic of the kids while waiting.

We were SO PROUD of Jessica...she won second place in her age group for the fastest time! The girl who beat her was only 5 minutes ahead of her and was 14 years old. Jessica ran her hardest and didn't stop once.


She and Daddy in their souvenir t-shirts. Picture compliments of Emma Grace. I'm so proud of her for not cutting her Daddy's head off because Buddy just had to be in the picture!

Gib wants me to run this with him and Jessica next year. We'll see what kind of shape I'm in! He is planning to run a 10K (6.2 miles) on July 31st...GO GIB!

"See" ya soon!


Wednesday, July 7, 2010

The Countdown

It's something I said I wouldn't do. When my friend, Ebe, told me how many days she had until her sweet Hannah's arrival, I remember clearly stating that I could never count down until we got really close. It would drive me crazy.

One thing I've learned in life is to "never say never". I was bored in the car pool line one day and found the calendar on my cell phone. What did I do? I counted the days until August 4th, the date of Dumplin's scheduled c-section.

104 days.

It seemed like an eternity.

What number are we at today?


28 days until our baby boy is scheduled to arrive. This is, of course, our plan. God may have a different one, but I hope not. He needs every day inside of me for his lungs to mature.

Ebe had jelly beans in a bowl and each day she or her hubby would eat one. I stole that idea from her for the girls. Instead of one bowl, we have two, one for each of them. Instead of jelly beans, we used Skittles.

Here they are counting their Skittles into their bowls.

We started at 45 days.

This is what the bowls look like today, at 28.

And just for fun, I pushed the Skittles to the top portion of the bowls and added a bit of Dumplin' in the picture.

It's a bit surreal that we're down to four weeks. Jessica keeps saying she's ready to go back to school. I'm NOT ready for them to go back. It seems like they just got out. Her reason for wanting school to start back is this..."But Mommy, when school starts, [Dumplin'] will come two days later".

So, counting down we are. All of us. Even Gib.


Saturday, July 3, 2010

Emma Grace's 7th Birthday in Pictures...Finally!

We brought this sweet girl home from the hospital seven years ago today, after she spent 109 days in the NICU. She was born on March 16, 2003 and came home July 3, 2003. I've been meaning, and wanting, to put her birthday pictures up from this year, and I thought this would be an appropriate day to do so. To honor her life and the miracle that she is. Never mind that I'm about 3 1/2 months late...better late than never is my motto! (If you're new to my blog, you can read her story by clicking her picture on my left side bar)

She had her party the weekend before her birthday. It was pretty simple since she got new bedding for her birthday. Here she is sleeping in her "new" bed for the first time.

She invited her best friends from school, and of course Sidney, to her party. She requested very simple pink and green cupcakes since those were the colors of her new bedding. We played musical chairs and hot potato with individual bags of Skittles. Gib also blew up 50-something balloons, and we wrote the letters of the alphabet on them. I divided the girls into two teams and the first to spell "Emma Grace" with the balloons won.

The day of her actual birthday, March 16th, started with cinnamon rolls for breakfast.

I took cupcakes and Cheetos Cheese Puffs and read "Albert the Bear" to her class.

She had her BFF from school, Caroline, over to play that afternoon.

She requested steak, mashed potatoes and broccoli for her birthday dinner. But at the last minute she changed her vegetable to green beans. Since it was her birthday, I obliged and went back to the store to appease her. But only because it was her birthday!

Sad thing was, though, I guess she played too hard and wore herself out that day. When she sat down for dinner, she had such a bad headache that she couldn't eat. I gave her medicine and she got comfy on the sofa. She fell asleep shortly after and didn't even have dinner on her birthday. It broke my heart for her. She ended up sleeping all night, and I saved her plate for the next night. We didn't get to sing or anything. :( Luckily she had been sung to at school earlier in the day.

I had bought Peanut Butter M&M's to put a candle in for her to blow out on her birthday. We were cupcaked out! We did it the next night.

And so was her 7th birthday. She says she wants a slumber party next year. I'm not so sure about that!


Thursday, July 1, 2010

Not So Little at 31 Weeks

Well, it appears that Mama T isn't the only one who is big!

I had a growth scan yesterday for Dumplin' since I measured 39cm last Thursday when I was only 30 weeks pregnant. I went back Monday (since I'm going three times a week now) and I only measured 34 1/2 cm. Dr. Joe is the only one who measures me, so I know it's accurate and not variation between practitioners. He said the difference was probably due to baby positioning. Makes sense to me.

I drove down and had lunch with the nurses and ultrasound (u/s) tech before my 1:45 appointment. The u/s tech thought I was about 35 weeks pregnant when she saw me. :) I enjoyed lunch but I couldn't wait to get into the u/s room and measure Dumplin'!

She got some really good measurements of his head, abdomen, and femur. Immediately when she saw his head, she said he has LOTS of hair. Can't wait to see! (Well, yes I can but you know what I mean!) After plugging in the measurements, she pulled up the screen that calculates the numbers.


Her measurements estimate that Dumplin weighs a whopping 5 pounds, 3 ounces already!

I was shocked! I had a feeling he was big based on how I feel and how big I am. But I had no idea he could be that big already.

I did make sure to clarify that the estimate could be a pound off either way... She confirmed that to be true but also said that she got some really good measurements and feels pretty sure that he weighs about 5 pounds.

He will probably be our biggest baby yet.

After the u/s, I had to see Dr. Joe. My uterus did not behave very well Tuesday night/Wednesday morning. I woke up around 1:30am having contractions. Real ones, complete with cramping, backache and a distorted uterus because it was so tight. I got up, started drinking water and moving around some. It scared the stew out of me! Not just for the contractions, but also because I have a classical incision from Emma Grace that could rupture if I go into labor. Gib got up to check on me, and I told him I would call Dr. Joe if they didn't stop soon. Thankfully, they slowed down a considerable amount, and I was able to go back to sleep around 5am.

Dr. Joe checked my cervix yesterday, and it is still long and thick, measuring about 6.2 which is great! I'm so thankful. Dumplin' needs every day inside of me to help his lungs mature. I came home with a prescription for Brethine in case that happens again. It makes me feel better to be armed with something to take and try on my own first. I had to take it very occasionally with Grady, and I suspect the same for the remainder of this pregnancy, too.

Just to be sure, I will have my blood sugar checked again tomorrow to be certain that I don't have gestational diabetes. I passed the first one but barely. I asked Dr. Joe if we could check again, thinking that might be why Dumplin' is so big. He obliged and said that was a good idea. They will take a fasting blood sugar this time, too. Hopefully I'll pass because I hate the thought of having to give up my Breyer's chocolate ice cream and Reese's Klondike bars. YUM! But I'll do it for Dumplin' if I need to!

I hate when Dumplin' gets the hiccups! I used to think they were so fun, but now I freak out everytime he has them. I read somewhere a correlation between hiccups and stillbirth. I don't know details, but it scares the stew out of me! Oh, how I miss the innocence of pregnancy...

With only 34 days left, I really need to get on the ball about a car seat and getting the room ready. But it's very overwhelming to me. I have to pack Grady's things away, and I don't want to. I know that each momento and card I pick up will bring a slew of emotions back to me. I'm so excited for Dumplin's arrival, and I want to get things ready for him. But it feels like saying goodbye to Grady all over again...


That's about all for now. I have a pedicure appointment today at 11 and the girls are getting haircuts while we're there. Emma Grace wants a lot cut off of hers; Jessica not so much. If I can remember, I'll take pictures to post.