Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Lucky 13!

Sometimes I can't believe that I am a mother.  I have 3 children!  This year I became a mother again.  I have taken longer than most preparing to become a mother.  It took us 13 years to welcome little Garrett to our family.  I have never had to work so hard to achieve anything as bringing children into this world.  My greatest accomplishment has been becoming a mother.

Although I love being a mom, I loved taking advantage of a long weekend for myself and going off on a wonderful girls trip to New York City!  I don't need to blog this as my wonderful friend Michelle already did.  Check out her link.  http://richnmichkenyon.blogspot.com/2013/04/new-york-new-york.html  I don't know how I got so lucky to be invited on this trip or how I got to have such a wonderful husband that let me go.  It was a trip of a lifetime!

Recently we have had many medical appointments.  This is something that is part of our "normal" life.
Hopefully hard work and determination is a family trait.  Here Hayden is standing tall!  He has been working for the past 4 years on learning how to take steps.  None yet, but he is standing and that is something!
 Garrett has been a wonderful child.  Full of smiles and easily goes along with the ride.  

Trying to be efficient with my time, I made back to back office appointments with Hanna getting her cast off and Hayden getting his first pair of RGOs (Reciprocating Gait Orthotics) or "Rock Star Super Legs", as Hayden is calling them.
Hanna's favorite colos are pink and purple.  The technitians were skilled enough to do both colors for her.  All of her class friends signed her cast and she was pretty proud of that.  We were also glad that the weather was warm enough here that she didn't have to wear long sleeves because they wouldn't fit over the cast.
 Here is Hayden standing in his new RGOs.  Unfortunately pants don't work well with the comfort of the braces.
On yet another trip to the hospital, Hayden had to go through the ER to get a shunt flow study.  Sweet baby Garrett had to keep him company.  Baby Garrett has seen the inside of too many ER rooms in his short little life.

We had never subjected Hayden to this test before.  He had been having low grade fevers on and off for weeks and had been throwing up and acting not himself which are hallmark signs of malfunction.  The big worry is always his brain.  We had to weigh the risk of doing the procedure verses the risk of ignoring possible malfunction of the shunt. We had waited long enough so we had to go through the ER to have the test. 

He had an MRI prior to the nuclear medicine test.  In the ER, the neurosurgeon put a needle with contrast dye into his brain shunt to see if the cerebral fluid was flowing properly through the tubing into his abdomen.  Simultaneously, they tested to see if there was an infection present in the fluid.  All the tests came back negative for infection and malfunction.  Yet I knew there was something still wrong.  Before we left the ER I asked the Dr. and nurse to catheterize him before they would release us.  Sure enough he had a bladder infection due to his neurogenic bladder.  I was so happy that it wasn't his brain.
The good patient got his favorite treat and even got a special toy from the hospital for being an exceptionally good patient.
While our family hasn't slowed down, neither has Garret.  He continues to grow cute and healthy here at 3 & 4 months old!

While we have had our struggles, our blessings are cherished that much more.  Hayden has had the opportunity to play on the Miracle League t-ball and be a part of the Cardinals team.  It has been awesome to see so many kids just like him having the best time!
 This is his serious thinkin' tongue. We are so thankful for the good people that volunteer and put something like this together.  It really is something special to be a part of.
We also got to enjoy a weekend visit from Kristin & Ben with a late night dinner at one of Austin's famous food trailer parks.  Hanna was starting to loose it from too much ice cream.
Hayden also got to go on a school field trip and ride the BUS with his new power chair!  He was excited about this for days.  Thankfully his nurse was there to help too.
 Nothing better than hanging with your friends.

 Cute Garrett
 In the spring, Texas is full of  fun small town spring carnivals.  Hayden loves fire trucks and the nice firemen that show him the tools.
 Instead of a Kindergarden graduation, Hanna's school puts on a Kindergarden Circus performance.  She was a "piggy dancer".  Click on this link to watch it on youtube Hanna's surprise school dance. The performance was a surprise with her awesome dance that we had never seen.  Following the performance she wore her stage makeup and went to the Daddy/Daughter dance.
Scott and I have been married now for 13 years on Memorial Day!  While we have had more struggles and continue to have challenges that seem beyond our strength to endure, we have witnessed miracles and received blessings beyond our comprehension.  I love our little family and each day hope to be worthy of it.  

The end of May is bitter sweet as it comes to a close.  We have sold our home of 8 years and hope to be moved out in the next few weeks.  The house we built together has many memories, where we started our family and brought all three of our children home from the hospital.  This milestone marks the start of our new journey and we pray that it is in the right direction.