Saturday, December 27, 2008

Christmas picts coming soon...

Christmas picts are coming soon, but we haven't finished all our Christmas festivities yet... so you'll have to wait.
Baby Harper is still inside...I wanted her to stay in past Christmas, but now...I'm ready... I am having contractions that are painful, still all throughout the day and night... and it is so annoying. I am ready for this to be over... If I wasn't in pain, I don't think I would care as much... but I am done with this... So please pray that she will come SOON! Not only because I want to be out of this pain... but also because we really want her to come in 2008, because of all the hospital bills we have already incurred... if she comes Jan 1 or later... we'll have to start all over with another deductible! Yuck!... Maybe she'll come today! .... This is what I've thought for the past several days, so I am not getting my hopes up... but we'll see. I am having a hard time being patient for sure!

Grace is doing well, and loving all the attention she is getting right now. It seems that she is ready for her baby sister to come too... (as ready as a 2.5 year old can be...) She loved Christmas this year, opening everyone's presents! I could have wrapped up toilet paper and toothpaste and she would have loved opening it!

Hopefully we'll have a Harper update very soon~ !

Monday, December 22, 2008


In all my bed-restedness, Grace and I have been able to do some fun things together. We've made tons and tons of ornaments... "Or-ma-ments" as Grace calls them! Here's a sampling of our work!

I also made some little birdie and nest garland... I'm not sure where I'll put it yet, but it turned out cute... Here are some pictures..... All the birds are different fabrics. I think the nests are my favorite! I guess the whole thing is around 10-12 feet long...

In other news... I am feeling about the same....Still contracting and feeling pressure... but I am refusing to go back to the hospital until I am about to die of pain...or until they send me directly from the dr's office. Today was the first time that Grace and I have had the whole day together, just the two of us...We watched Mickey Mouse Christmas in bed this morning, went to the gym, to the store for Grace to pick out a present for her buddy and new pacis for Harper... We ate lunch together at home and then she went down or nap... She didn't have a breakdown all day, was so happy and in such a good mood. It was so nice just to do 'normal' things again. I think it's good for her to see me doing things that I used to do every day, even as simple as laundry, picking up around the house etc. Tonight Chris told her that he would take her to the mall to do some Christmas shopping and she's been talking about it all day. So I guess the one good thing about Harper staying in a little longer is that we can have some good time with Grace before she comes!

Friday, December 19, 2008

3 hours in the hospital...

Well, I am not going to get into the whole story because I may break the computer... but I was having painful contractions last night for a couple of hours, so Chris and I went into triage. When we walked into the hospital, it was completely packed... People everywhere... I was having contractions every 2-3 minutes, but was dehydrated... they gave me 2 bags of IV fluid and that helped the pain a little bit, but didn't stop the contractions... My doctor wasn't on call, and is currently on Maternity leave.. so I had to see another doc that was a complete idiot. While I was there, I dilated more, so it was obvious that something was going on... But guess what? They sent me home! Here was the doctor's comment: "Yes, I think that you are in labor, maybe the early stages, so we don't know how long this will take, so why don't you go home and come back when you can't breathe through your contractions..."

Ok, so when I cease to breathe... I'll come back in...sure...makes sense... I was so mad... still am! So pray that things will get going fast! I guess it could be today or in another week.. no one really knows. A friend of a friend who is a doula said after hearing all my 'symptoms' that probably the only reason they sent me home was because they didn't have any rooms left! I would believe it too, it was packed out last night! If I am not feeling good later in the day, I may go into the doctor's office just so that they can check my cervix before the weekend.... But the last thing I want to hear is... No Change... so maybe I'll wait....

Pray for labor! This is horrible... Contractions for the last 5 weeks and now they actually hurt! NOT FUN!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

No new news here!

Well, no new news here folks... I did go to the OB on Tuesday, and everything was pretty much the same. I wasn't feeling the baby move as much as is normal, so they hooked me up to the non-stress test machine... It took almost 2 hours for them to see all the necessary heart rhythms that they want to see in a 20 minute period... and the whole time I was having regular contractions. But neither seemed to be too concerning because they let me go home. They kept asking me if the contractions hurt, and my response: "Not really, but I am telling you that they didn't hurt when I had Grace until like 30 minutes before she came out." I am not sure if they think I am lying about my contractions with Grace, but they can look back in the file, people!

My concern now is when do I go in? I have been having regular contractions literally for about a month. No kidding. Only a few out of the thousands I have had actually hurt... but this poses a problem... how do I know when to go to the hospital? My suspicion is that if I just picked a day and went into triage, they would see that I was having regular contractions, and I was dilated... maybe they would keep me...???? I am still debating this idea. I just don't want to be sent home!!!

I have had a lovely last few days. I haven't been confined to the house, I've gotten to cook a meal or two and I've cleaned the house... (well, sort of...) All these things make me feel like me again! I've shopped and gotten Grace a few special things, and have actually gotten to hold her a couple of times. That really does me good....

We did have a tragedy yesterday. "Gracie LeeLee" (which is the only lovie that really mattered to her) was lost. We were at Oprymills shopping, and we lost it in Sun, Ski Sports (or whatever that store is called). I cried more than Grace did. This is a small request, but I am still praying that they find it somewhere under the thousands of racks of coats and call us! She got to pick out a new "Gracie LeeLee" yesterday, but it's not the same. I couldn't sleep last night, and was up in the rec room. I heard Grace on the monitor talking in her sleep: "I don't want new Gracie LeeLee, I want other one..." "I don't want thaaaaat." This conversation went on for a few minutes, but it was so sad. She is really trying to be brave about it when she is awake... but the poor kid is stressing in her sleep about it. Chris said that she ran into her classroom today to show her teacher her new LeeLee... and told her that the other was 'hiding.' Chris said he actually got teary when I told him that the original LeeLee was lost....This would be a Christmas Miracle if they were to call us and tell us they found it. I know it's silly, but I hope they do!

So, besides the LeeLee thing, here are a few prayer requests: That I would know when to go to the hospital, and that I would have peace about the birth...whenever that may be! Thank you so much!

Oh, and here is another funny Grace quote. The other night I asked her to come up to the rec room where Chris and I were... she responded: "But I caaaannn't.... I WAAAYYY too busy learning my name!" (while drawing on her art table in the kitchen)

Friday, December 12, 2008

Ultrasound update Dec 11

We went for our last ultrasound with MFM yesterday and it went well. I was very apprehensive after last week's visit, and wanted them to review all my films and get the opinion of the doctor who had first diagnosed the problem. I toyed with the idea of calling to ask that all these things be done, but I just prayed about it.

When we got there, we had a tech that we had never seen before, who was very nice. We voiced our concerns to her and after she had gotten the necessary measurements and things that she needed, she asked the doctor to come in and scan the heart herself, as well as talk us through what they saw.

Yesterday the doctor saw that there was still some fluid around the heart, but called it physiologic vs. pathalogic... and measured the actual heart size again, and it was measuring only around 25% of the chest size, which is normal. Harper was being a little stubborn because she had her hand and arm over her heart most of the time, so they could never get a picture of the whole thing, but they saw enough to think that everything looked normal. (Again, the fluid isn't normal, but they don't think it's anything to worry about at this point.)

Baby is measuring around 6 pounds, give or take some... which I am a little baffled by, as I have only gained 8 total. (Lost 4 when I was in the hospital.) The OB doesn't seem to be concerned about the weight gain because the baby looks good. So we'll see. I am praying that she comes soon if she is already weighing that much. I don't really want a 10 pounder!

Doctor G said that if we wanted her to, she would refer us to a Pediatric Cardiologist at Vanderbilt who could take another look before the baby was born and give us his thoughts. I declined only because, at this point everyone is speculating anyways, and ultrasound can't be conclusive... therefore I didn't want another opinion to worry about. Everyone could agree on one thing based on the sonogram, and when the baby is actually born, it could be totally different... so I think we'll just trust and wait.

They tried to examine her feet again, but because it's so late in pregnancy and the baby is squished anyways, there is no way for them to tell if she will have clubbed feet like Grace did. Since her feet looked normal at the 20 week ultrasound, they said that was a good sign that she won't have a problem, and if one is present, it will be slight. (but again, who really knows)

The OB seems to think that when I actually go into labor again that it will be very fast... she has said several times that she hopes I can make it to the hospital driving all the way from Franklin... (that really makes ya feel good...doesn't it?). She still wants me to take it easy, no heavy lifting, and doesn't really feel comfortable about me being alone with Grace. This is kind of hard for me. I totally understand that if I did go into labor or my water broke, and it was just she and I... what would I do... not to mention, not being able to lift her; but there's something about not being able to take care of your own child that is a little discouraging... I am just trying to hang in there and I know it won't be long anyways...

Today Grace had a rough morning, and really wanted me to hold her and meet all her needs... and some of those things I can't do. It breaks my heart when she is crying huge alligator tears saying 'mommy hold you, mommy hold you..." and I can't.... She doesn't totally get it. Again, I need to remind myself... and as my mom says... "She won't remember this when she's married..."

Since we had snow yesterday and people in Nashville can't seem to comprehend driving when there are 2 white flakes falling from the sky... we didn't get home until around 8:45pm... so I haven't really had time to think about all this. I am really content and thankful and peaceful right now, so that is the LORD! Still nervous about the actual delivery... but who isn't I guess.

Oh, and can I add that I was able to go walk around the Goodwill yesterday after my appointment and it was like food for a weary soul.... Oh my goodness, I loved it and I felt a little like myself again. Most people think I am a little off my rocker (and I very well may be...) but I love The Goodwill... or any thrift store for that matter... and I love going alone and searching every aisle and finding every good deal in the place...! It's cheap therapy...

And I have one more funny from Grace: She picked up a new phrase at school yesterday.... It's a little above her age category in my opinion... I remember being obsessed with this word when I was probably in second grade, but she's got it down pat... and uses it in correct context might I add... Here's the word: "NOOOOOOOTTTTT" as in "I'm tired......NOOOTTTTT" "You're cute..... NOOOOOTTTTT" "I silly........NOOOOTTTTTT" and in the middle of the word, she drops her voice an octave or so and adds some 'gravelin' in there... it is hilarious... Now, don't you agree that this is a little advanced for a 2 year old? Apparently not these days...

Friday, December 5, 2008


This morning my countenance is very different than it was yesterday. I can't even explain all that was going through my head throughout the day. I can't tell you how much your emails and comments mean to me. So many of you said that you would be praying for peace. That is exactly how I feel today: Peaceful and Thankful. Thank you for understanding and accepting my honesty. I have to admit that as soon as I pushed the 'publish post' button yesterday, I kind of wished I hadn't. I was truly embarrassed at how I was feeling, and felt really insecure about how people would react to it! But thank you for loving me anyways!

I am still having a hard time understanding what is going on, but I am confident that God has shown himself strong! He showed up in our time of need! In writing about how I was feeling last night, really wrestling with the conflicting feelings that I was having... I just felt loved. Although I was completely alone, I felt Jesus surrounding me saying "It's OK to feel these things, I love you anyways."

I found out last night that there is a 5 and 6 year old class at church who specifically prayed for the baby and our family on Sunday. I was so touched. A sweet lady from my bible study is the teacher and was telling me how sweet, innocent, and totally faith-filled their prayers were. They totally believed that God was hearing what they were saying and that he would answer their prayers. Child-like faith, it is so sweet and I long to have it!

I cried last night, it's the first time I've cried since we found out something was not quite right... I'm not sure why, I was thankful, touched by all of you (and your children's) prayers for us, maybe a little scared and a lot overwhelmed.

If I may add one more prayer request to your if you don't have enough! Pray for Grace... she is doing well, but I think that it is starting to get to her that I can't pick her up and hold her, and do things with her (outside of the house). She is having so much fun, getting one on one attention from someone all the time, but she's a little sad that I can't do the things she is used to. She is also 2 and trying to exert her independence, so we've been hearing a lot of "NO" and seeing more tantrums, but that's normal I guess. It's just hard for me to see because sometimes I feel like it's my fault.... she is just a little confused at all that is going on.

Thank you so much! We don't have any more appointments until next Thursday, so we won't know much more until then, so I'll probably just update when the mood strikes!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Good News and Complete Honesty...

Let me start by telling you about the ultrasound. We saw a different doctor today, one that we'd never seen before and that had not seen any of our previous scans. She was very nice, and claimed to be the "Scientific One" in the group. She briefly looked at the heart and said that she didn't see anything wrong with it. She said that there was no fluid present today and that the heart was well within the size limits for the chest. Today it was measuring only about 26% of the chest size and it is 'allowed' to occupy up to 33%. While we were in the hospital, it was obvious that the heart was taking up at almost half of the chest, although they didn't give us a percentage at that time. And the fluid was present and measuring around 3-3.5 mm. The doctors had also told us that the enlarged heart would not 'shrink' per say... that the baby would grow with it, but that once it's enlarged, it won't 'go back down' (for lack of a better phrase).

I hesitate to be totally honest here, but who am I kidding... I have a hard time sugar coating things, and I tend to just spill it... Anyways, I am a little ashamed to say that my first thought wasn't "PRAISE THE LORD! HE HAS HEALED HER!" I was thinking a little more along the lines of "Doc, what is wrong with you? Are you crazy? Are you blowing us off? Did you go to med school?" I did ask if she would compare the scans that I had while in the hospital and the ones that I've had recently to see if there was indeed a difference. She said that she didn't have, and couldn't view the scans from the hospital, but based on what she'd seen here, she didn't think it was necessary. (This kind of annoyed me.)

I am having a hard time processing the news. When 2 doctors tells you that there is something wrong with your child's heart and that they are pretty concerned about it, and then all of a sudden, another doctor says there is nothing wrong... What am I am supposed to think? I was still processing that there was something wrong, but I had no idea that it would be this hard to process that she may be fine!

I am the kind of person who doesn't want to be let down. I like to think that I am prepared for things, good or bad. I don't like to be caught off guard or taken by surprise. And to be totally honest, I am AFRAID to totally believe that God healed her because I don't want to be let down if there actually is something wrong. Does that make sense? What if they see something totally different on Thursday when I go again? What if when she is born, her heart is indeed abnormal? Does that mean God didn't answer these prayers?

I wish I was full of 'holy wisdom' and had something profound to say... but I don't. I'm not sure what to ask for prayers for.... I am kind of embarrassed at the way I am feeling. Anyways, I guess just pray as the Spirit leads you. I really don't want to sound ungrateful in any way for what God is doing. I guess I can't even fathom what's going on right now.

Thank you so much for your prayers... They really are making a difference in our lives!

Monday, December 1, 2008

What is going on...?????

Well, I couldn't think of another way to title the blog... because that phrase is all that's ringing in my head right now. What the heck is going on?

I've been frustrated by my ultrasounds for the past week because we really haven't been told anything... good or bad... about what the baby's looking like or what's going on with her. We have just been seeing the tech that does the ultrasound, and not one of the MFM doctors. I still haven't heard anything about my lab results from the hospital, and apparently the OB office doesn't know where they are either.... Remember, people, this was a KEY ingredient in figuring out if I should be induced, or if I should just be on bedrest until she comes on her own.

I just got a call from MFM saying that now we need to have consults with the MFM doctors after every ultrasound. In some ways this is a praise, because maybe they can tell us more what's going on... but on the other hand, I am worried that they've seen something more, or things are getting worse. I am not sure if someone dropped the ball and we should have been having consults all along, or if based on what they've seen on the last 4 ultrasounds, they now feel we need to be seen by the doctor twice a week.

I am so up in the air right now with my emotions..... At the moment, I am very frustrated and feel kind of helpless and in the dark...I have no idea what to feel one way or the other, and am just in an overall state of unrest.

I know that the devil is lurking around every corner to send frustration, doubt, discouragement and insecurity my way. I know in my head that I can resist the devil and he will flee from me...(James 4:7) but it's almost as if I don't have the strength to utter those words with conviction. I know that's just what Satan wants me to feel... so I'll say "Get behind me, Satan!"

I know in my head that I should not fear, that God is not in fear... God is with me, whom shall I fear? For me, all this uncertainty causes fear... if I had facts one way or the other, I feel like it would be easier for me to trust...that sounds silly, but for some reason that's how I think... maybe it's how we all think... it's so much easier to trust in something that is seen vs. something that is unseen...

I am just rambling here, forgive me. Let me try to get back on track here... This is something I read from the devotion book, "Streams in the Desert" by L.B. Cowman

"We often pray to be delivered from afflictions, and even trust God that we will be. But we do not pray for Him to make us what we should be while in the midst of the afflictions. Nor do we pray that we would be able to live within them, for however long they may last, in the complete awareness that we are held and sheltered by the Lord and can therefore continue within them without suffering any harm."

This opened my eyes. I haven't been praying that the Lord would make me a new person through this situation, I haven't been praying that I will live IN this situation in complete trust and awareness that I am HELD, and safe. My prayers (though somewhat few lately...) have been focused on getting OUT of this situation, one way or another.

If I believe that God is good all the time, and all the time, God is good... then I would truly be OK to rest in the situation where God has placed me. It is obviously His will for me to be in this very place for this very time... so why don't I pray for him to pour out His wisdom and truth on me in the midst of the mess? There may be so much I am missing by constantly trying to pray myself out of the situation.

The funny thing is that when I stop typing, look around the room, or think about talking to someone about this later, I am just fuming, frustrated and annoyed at what is going on... so even as I write these things, my mind is battling between believing what God is telling me and what Satan is telling me. Ahhhh!

I'm not really sure how to conclude, but again, thank you to everyone that is pouring into our family. It means the world to be surrounded and lifted up in prayer. Thank you for standing in the gap to pray these things for us when we are having a hard time praying them for ourselves. We have an OB appointment tomorrow and a MFM appointment on Thursday, so I'll update if anything changes... or simply when the mood strikes!