Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Tender Mercies From My Five Year Old

Let me preface this journal entry by saying that Kimball is my sensitive child. He's not a risk taker or a dare devil, he likes things to be planned and prepared. Some might call him a pansy or a wimp but he's not, he's just my sensitive child who's always concerned for others.

Today was not one of my better days. I was tired, weak, and nauseous all day and when I feel yucky then my patience is next to nothing. I wasn't a good mom today. I sighed a lot in the annoyed are-you-kidding-me-why- is-this-happening-right-now tone, I yelled and was super grumpy, and was not a nice mom. I finally just lost it as the kids were fighting me trying to get them to bed. I had a meltdown and just couldn't stop crying.

Kimball came in the living room and saw me fall to pieces. What happened next was nothing short of a miracle. Kimball began apologizing for not eating his dinner (a very sore spot an hour previous) and said from now on he'd always eat whatever I fixed for him. He apologized for making me cry and I felt that I owed him an explanation. I tried explaining that even though we are happy to have another baby that the baby makes me very sick and sometimes when I'm not feeling very good I have hard days and lose my patience. I apologized to him for not being very nice, for not being the fun mom anymore, for yelling and losing my patience. I told him how much I loved him and that he would always be my best buddy.

Somehow in that moment Kimball grew into a wise 30 year old man who was filled with nothing but compassion for me. He started using a lot of hand gestures as he spoke and very matter-of-factly said he was sorry the baby makes me sick but not to worry because one day the baby will come out and I'll feel better. He said not to worry about Cora, that he'd take care of her and help her and I wouldn't have to worry about her. He said he loves the baby. He thanked me for letting a baby grow inside of me even though I get very sick. He told me again how much he loved me and all I could do was sob and hold him in a tight hug as long as he'd let me. He even rubbed my back to get me to stop crying.

Such a tender mercy from my sweet and forgiving five year old boy who proved to be much wiser than I ever knew. Oh how I love my little buddy!!!

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

An Emotional and Exciting Birthday Celebration

Yesterday Cora turned 3 years old!!! With that, she also graduated from the Guild School. It was a very emotional day for me, again, remembering everything we've been through the last 3 years together. And look at her! She's absolutely amazing and we've been so incredibly blessed!!!

She was able to bring cupcakes to share with her class and have a little party with her classmates.

This is her current team: Alyssa-speech therapist, Lois-teacher, Dan-occupational therapist, Rebekah-teacher, and Ginette-physical therapist. Ginette is the only one who has been working with Cora for all 3 years and I knew she understood better than anyone what a momentous occasion it was because she's seen first hand how far Cora has come. Ginette will always have a place in my heart.
Saying a final good bye to the fish.
And our own little birthday party! All Cora wanted was cake, she kept saying cake over and over all day long.

She got a baby from Grandma Cox and some dollhouse furniture from Grandma Pettingill. I made her some dress up skirts and no-mess make up and bracelets, and got some underwear (time to potty train now that she can say poo and pee), and piggy bank. She loves the dress up shoes and Kimball had a great time pretending with her!

This. This picture sums up pretty well the last three years I've had with this amazing girl. With 2 heart defects, 2 brain abnormalities, and 7 gastric problems, we were told she'd basically be a vegetable that won't walk or talk or eat on her own. She started therapies at the Guild School at 3 months old and today we said a very tearful goodbye as she graduated. I never thought the day would come and hoped we'd never have to leave behind these amazing teachers and therapists. After 3 years and 5 therapies later (2 of which she'll continue), she's our walking, talking, eating miracle who defied the odds and proved doctors wrong. 

I've learned patience and faith in a loving Heavenly Father. I've gained a deeper testimony of the resurrection. I've received unconditional love from a perfect spirit given a broken body, and although one might complain that her physical self isn't "normal" I'm just grateful that she was given a body, no matter how frail and broken and imperfect. Her love is certainly perfect for me.

I've gained a greater insight into the medical world (I should have an M.D. by now), both awed and at times quite let down. I've learned to talk tough and keep my guns up talking with doctors so that they actually listen to parents and when they do listen, that I'll have a friend for life. I'm humbled by what our bodies can do and know that nothing can create something so majestic as the Creator himself. (Even though I sit here and grow another little body inside me and complain 24/7 at how awful it is).

My darling Cora, what an emotional and joyful day it's been to celebrate this awesome milestone and simply that you're still here with us when during your first year, we guessed that every day. You're our ray of hope and a constant reminder of our eternal promises. Happy 3rd birthday my sweet, sweet girl!!!

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Dust If You Must

Dust if you must, but wouldn't it be better
to paint a picture or write a letter,
bake a cake or plant a seed,
ponder the difference between want and need?

Dust if you must, but there's not much time,
with rivers to swim and mountains to climb,
music to hear and books to read,
friends to cherish and life to lead.

Dust if you must, but the world's out there,
with the sun in your eyes, the wind in your hair,
a flutter of snow, a shower of rain,
this day will not come around again.

Dust if you must, but bear in mind,
old age will come and it's not kind,
and when you go - and go you must -
you, yourself, will make more dust.

- Rose Milligan

Mom's Visit

This past week Mom came to visit me! There's just something about being sick and needing your mom, Mom makes everything better!!! The downside is that Cora got a nasty cold the first day mom was here and by the second day Mom and I both caught it. She deep cleaned the house and made 14 freezer meals for us and played with the kids until she was worn out and got up with Cora every night and took the kids to school/therapy, and grocery shopped. She's superwoman alright. I'm just so thankful that she was willing to help me, I know that no matter what I need both Mom and Dad would drop what they were doing and help. That's just what she did and never even complained when Cora got her sick. I don't know how to put into words how grateful I am for her love and support. I just love her so much!!!

Practicing the One Eyebrow

Kimball Turns 5!!!

Kimball felt special just being able to take cupcakes to preschool to share with his classmates. He LOVED that and they even gave him a crown!

Lance was able to take most of the day off to make Kimball's day super special. First was Kimball's request for a man trip to Chuck E. Cheese, just the two of them, and then later he took both kids bowling per Kimball's request.

I was too sick to do anything no less make a birthday cake, so I ordered a cake from Albertson's, which just had to be dinosaurs. I think it turned out pretty cool! He sure received lots of love from both grandparents as they sent his birthday gifts but I think his favorite gift, oddly enough, was new spiderman underwear. Happy birthday, Buddy, we sure love you!!!

Happy Halloween

I sure am grateful for a husband who makes holidays and special occasions a priority when I'm too sick to get off the couch. Lance let the kids carve and decorate their pumpkins and took them to all the Halloween activities.

Cora was a kitty or a "yow" (meow) as she calls it and Kimball was the Hulk. Because Halloween was on a Monday they both were able to wear their costumes to school/therapy. Between trick or treating at school, the ward trunk or treat, and additional neighborhood trick or treating, the kids have enough candy to last them an entire year!

Cox's Visit

Donna and John came to visit us for four days to drop off some Christmas gifts and to help me out. Unfortunately I was unable to participate in anything because I was so sick but they took Lance and the kids to Green Bluff to pick out some pumpkins from the farm and the Cat Tails exhibit. They all had a great time and I was sure thankful for their help!!

First Day of Preschool!

This year we enrolled Kimball in a preschool that's put on by a program at the high school just a block down from our house. There's an actual preschool teacher who oversees it but the high school students are the teachers. He absolutely loves it! For so long everything has been about Cora - from her doctor appointments to therapy and everything in between and she's always been the priority because of her health. I think he feels special that he has one thing that's just for him.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

This Has to End Sometime...Right?

I seriously don't' know what I'd do without this picc line!! It has kept me from losing any more weight and keeps the vomiting at bay. The nausea is still quite extreme and nothing helps that at all. Some days are somewhat decent and others are downright awful, I have no clue what makes the difference. A few safe foods are waffles with butter, captain crunch, baked potato with butter, and milk. Milk is the surprising one and I hope I never throw it up because it has some protein in it and it would just be awful coming up.

I still hate every aspect of being pregnant. Every. Single. Thing. I'm 12 weeks and have an OB appointment tomorrow, I don't know if they're doing an ultrasound but I'm always worried about the baby's health. With it being so hard to keep things down and eat nutritious foods and with me feeling utterly miserable, I can't imagine the baby being very healthy. I guess we'll find out tomorrow.

Oh and I chipped a piece of a molar off. Just great! So tomorrow I'm headed to the dentist just to throw up all over their shoes because I'm sure their instruments and poking around in my mouth will make me throw up. So not looking forward to that! But it's happened every pregnancy - all the acid from throwing up destroys my teeth and I always have one chip or break.

I know when all this is over and my body is back to normal and healthy, I'll look back and be so glad I didn't give up. So I still take it day by day and sometimes hour by hour.

Thursday, October 13, 2016


Last week I ended up in the ER, unfortunately it was while Lance was out of town for work and the nanny was sick. I had to call in some favors from friends to help me out that day. I was too dehydrated and couldn't stop throwing up so I was at the ER for seven hours getting fluids and meds. It was awful.

The next day was my first appointment with my OB doctor and we received lots of good news. The baby is measuring one week bigger than my dates so they bumped my due date to May 13, 2017. I tell you it was like Christmas morning hearing that!! He said it's been a long time since he's had a patient with Hyperemesis Gravidarum as severe as mine; he ordered a picc line to be placed for hydration and nutrition and a home health care company to help me with it. Meaning, a nurse comes to the house and teaches me how to administer fluids so I can do it on my own instead of having go to the ER every other day. He also said I'd be a good candidate to do a VBAC.

This passed Monday was the worst day to date - Lance was out of town for work again so when I got the picc line placed I was all on my own. To make matters worse it was a day of relentless vomiting, it just would not stop. After I got home from having the picc line placed it was 1:00 and I was so looking forward to a nap to escape the vomiting. It didn't work. I couldn't get fluids until the home health nurse came to show me how to do it and she wasn't scheduled to come until 3-5pm. The waiting was unbearable and the day was just so awful, everything about it. She didn't get to the house until 5:30, the nanny was watching two extra kids at our house, Lance was still out of town, and I was just dying. Just dying!

The nurse tried teaching me and explaining how to administer the meds and fluids but my mind was so far gone, the only thing I could focus on was getting the fluids. Long story short, I finally got fluids at 7pm which did make the vomiting stop although I was still nauseous. It was just the worst day. THE WORST!!

Monday, October 3, 2016

Woe Is Me

I'm 7 weeks pregnant and in the woe is me stage. I was doing pretty good for a bit and as week 5 approached things gradually changed. I was a bit nauseous, tired, and started to get weak throughout the day. Week 6 proved to bring the nausea on with greater force and with no family in town, I had to find a nanny type girl to help me with the kids during the day. There goes my savings. Week 7 I've started throwing up and last night I was in urgent care waiting for IV fluids.

I'm in the state of mind wondering why in the world did I choose to go through this again?! WHY??? I'm so stinking miserable and so sick. I'm not involved with the kids at all and feel pretty guilty about it. I'll never understand why being pregnant has to be so dang hard but one thing is for sure, there's only one way to bring children into this world. Thus my utter misery.

I did get a blessing last week and I remember faith and sacrifice and the atonement being mentioned. We've prayed for guidance in making this decision as I ultimately left it up to lance. His response was, "I think I'd have regrets if we didn't have one more." Well, I don't want my husband to have regrets in his life, especially about children, and so after 6 months we are finally in my current state of just-kill-me-now. I do know this will be the last, that decision was made by me before we got pregnant and I'm even more resolved now that this is the last one.

Heaven help me! I need all the help I can get right now!

Friday, September 30, 2016

Random Photos

Lance singing at Pig Out in the Park (not the director)
 This darling girl!

 Excited for Halloween!
 He fell asleep with this bean bag balancing on his forehead.