Friday, November 26, 2010

The difference a year can make

Last year at this time I was dealing with infertility. My heart ached at the thought of never carrying a child, growing old with nobody to take care of me, no family to spend the holidays with. It was a very difficult time. I was so selfish and full of hatred. I hated that my friends and family were getting pregnant all around me. I couldn't understand why I couldn't do something that was happening by "accident" to everyone else.

Thanksgiving last year we had dinner at my moms house. We all sat around the table eating and I watched my sister pick at her food pushing it around from one side of the plate to another. We all got up from the table and my sister told me that she needed to talk to me about something so we stepped outside. With tears in her eyes she told me that she was going to be a mommy. I was in shock. She kept apologizing to me and telling me over and over that she didnt mean for it to happen, she wasnt ready for a baby, and that she wanted me to have the first baby. I was mad, I hated her, I screamed, I said hateful things. I couldnt look at her, I couldnt talk to her, I just wanted to run away. I went into my other sisters room and I cried like I never had before. The next few months I pulled myself away from my family. I felt like I couldnt share in their happiness so I didnt want to be around them. Everyone kept giving me "advice" on things to try and stuff to do to help me to conceive. It made me madder and madder nobody understood because everyone that was telling me this had conceived so easy.

In March the doctors told us that having children of our own was not very likely. In April I found out I was expecting. I will never forget that night for as long as I live. The look in my husbands eyes when he read me the results to the test I had taken and didnt want to look at. I was on cloud nine! I took several more tests and they all had the same result. I just couldnt believe it. I woke up everyday thinking I was going to wake up from my dream. Slowly but surely my belly started growing. I apologized to my sister for all the hurt that I had caused her. I knew that no matter what we were going to need each other. No matter what our children were going to need each other and we both knew we wanted them to grow up being best friends. I threw her a baby shower and a month later got to meet the sweetest little guy I have ever laid eyes on.

Payden Brown born July 6, 2010

And then came August...the days were slowly crawling by. I had waited so long to see my baby on that ultrasound and find out if my sisters baby would have a partner in crime to grow up with or a little princess that he would defend all the way through school. Little did I know that things were about to change. August 12, 2010 that is the day that I became a changed women. That is the day that the little things in life didnt matter anymore. That is the day that I became aware of CHDs.

Last year I cried because I thought I would never have a chance to meet my children. This year I cried because I dont know what my sons future holds.

Last year I hated the fact that my sister was going to have a baby. This year I played with my nephew, made him laugh, kissed him, tickled him, fed him, and was thankful for it.

Last year I unpacked all of the decorations and started decorating for Christmas. This year I have to start packing for Christmas spent in the hospital with my little blessing.

If only last year I would have known what I know now I could of been a better person sooner. Oh the difference a year can make!

From the bottom of your mommies heart I am so thankful for the way you have changed me. All of the things that I thought were such a big deal no longer matter. Because of you I have so many things to be thankful for. Because of you I will never look at this world the same. I promise to give you the best chance that I can give you. I promise to cherish everyday that you have with me. I promise to continue to fight for you. I promise to give you the best life I can give you. I owe you the world son.

I love you will all my heart and then some,

Monday, November 22, 2010

Trying to prepare

Just a warning this post will probably be long and all over the place.

We went to St. Louis for all the appointments and tours of the hospitals today. Im always fine for the most part until I get up there and realize that this will be my home and life in the very near future. We arrived Sunday night and spent the night because our appointments started at 8 am this morning. Our first appointment was the routine ultrasound to check his growth. He is growing awesome they said he was around 5 lbs and 6 oz today. Hopefully he continues to grow and with Thanksgiving Im sure I will have no problem trying my hardest to fatten him up some more. We didnt get very many pics this time and none in 3d kinda disappointing but the little guy just wouldnt cooperate lol.

Our next appointment was with Maternal Fetal Medicine just the routine checkup of measurements, weight gain and all that fun stuff. I asked lots of questions about the delivery and what to expect. They have me scheduled for a c section (he is breech) on Dec. 22nd. I have very mixed emotions about that day, of course Im excited to meet him but I also just wish he could stay in there forever because this is the only time I can protect him. After the 22nd he is on his own and I feel completely helpless. Why should a mother and father have to go through this? Is it a test on our marriage? Is it a test of our faith? Whatever it is I dont like it and I would literally give my life to take this all away from him.

Our 3rd appointment of the day, the one that I always dread, the fetal echo. I hate more than anything having to see his broken heart on the screen knowing its all out of my hands. Last time we were there they thought he had a restrictive atrial septum. This time they are saying it looks completely intact. There is no blood flow getting through at all. This is the part that is the hardest for me. (This is the part in the appointment where I just stared at the floor with tears flowing, and tried not to listen to a word the doctor was telling me) What this means for Parker after he is born is that he will need immediate attention in the cath lab. From what I remember the doctor said they will need to act VERY fast. These babies are very critical and without this procedure within the first few minutes of his life he will not make it. The doctor explained to us that even though it seems so unfair, the wont have an extra second to spare for me to even touch him. The will immediately intubate him and whisk him away to the cath lab. Adam is going to be running behind them to be with our son. At this time I will be alone, very alone, without my baby and my husband. Nothing but strange doctors around me getting me all sewed up. I want my husband to be with Parker but at the same time this is the time Im going to need him. I feel so selfish. Im so scared of being alone but I know our son needs him more. Im a big girl and I should be able to deal with this by myself right? Why do I feel this way? The doctor just didnt give us much hope at all, he kept repeating that our baby was very sick. He said that after they open up the septum he still may not be strong enough to have the Norwood (the 1st surgery) then we will be faced with a decision to put him through it or just let him go. I dont want to think ahead to that point right now, I cant even imagine.

My feelings...Im handling it all the best I can. I have been trying to prepare myself for "worst case scenario" all along. I know you will NEVER be prepared for having to let go of your child but I feel like I have to start preparing now. I know that I can do this, that while it may be the hardest thing I will ever go through in my entire life, I know that I will be ok. Its my husband that I worry about. I cant fix it for him, I cant give him the family hes always wanted, I cant give him this perfect baby, our first born child. I know this may sound so wrong to some but Ive been grieving the loss of my baby since my 20 week ultrasound. Its the only thing I knew to do and Ive kind of in a weird way came to peace with all of this. As much as I want to fix my baby I know its out of my hands and I have no control. If he lives he will be my miracle and if he goes to heaven then he will no longer suffer and he will be my angel. As much as I hate to think that he wont make it I find strength in knowing that he wont suffer here on earth. My husband on the other hand hasnt shared his feelings on any of this, he keeps it all bottled up and Im so scared for him. He has done nothing but be strong for me and has yet to show that he is weak. He gets me through every day when all I want to do is lay in bed and cry. I love him so much for this but I want him to be weak with me, I want him to cry with me, and I want him to talk to me. Im so scared I will lose my son and my husband all at once. Im just so damn scared.

One thing I think about often, I had a very hard time conceiving this precious baby. We were told that it would probably never happen because we both had fertility issues. I used to pray/beg god for me just to be able to become pregnant. That is all I wanted was to be that glowing pregnant women in the store rubbing her belly. I would always think about Adam rubbing my belly and singing to our unborn child. I tried to imagine what it would feel like to feel the kicks for the first time. I dreamed of what I would look like pregnant. I thought of holiday traditions we would start and bedtime routines that included story time. Now that I think back not once did I pray to be pregnant with a HEALTHY child. Why would I not ask for that too? Why would I just assume that I would have this healthy baby and everything would be ok? I think maybe this is were I went wrong. Why would I beg god for a chance to be pregnant but not ask for my innocent child to be healthy? This is all too much sometimes god help me please...

Now that this has become a super long rambling mess of nothing that makes sense I just ask that everyone pray for us. Give me advice. Help me help my husband. Please help us prepare...

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Emotionally all over the place....

Lately I find myself comparing our situation to others, I dont know why I do it I really try not to but I cant stop myself and its getting me no where emotionally. I still ask myself why and I still cry out that life isn't fair. I feel like people around me think that I should just except everything and just go with it but I cant stop wondering what if.

I decided right after we found out that Parker had HLHS that I didn't want a baby shower and that I didn't want a nursery because I was thinking about all the what ifs. I didn't want to come home to a house full of things that represented his life if he wasn't here with me. I don't understand why I cant just carry on like everything is normal and celebrate this pregnancy as if everything was ok and that he WILL come home with me. I feel like I'm mourning the loss of my baby before he is even born. I don't know if I made the right decision by not wanting things because now I feel like I'm not prepared for a baby that very possibly could come home.

I am just such a mess and feel so alone through all of this. I feel like I'm "behind" emotionally when I compare myself to other heart moms who are currently going through or have been through this already. I have more bad days than good lately. I think its because the time is getting so close. I can't look at baby things in stores without crying or feeling sad. I cant be happy for other people whom are expecting or just had a baby. I feel like I have so much hatred and I don't like it, but how do I just get over it and except my situation?

I find myself saying if he comes home instead of when he comes home. I don't want to be so negative about everything but I guess I'm trying to prepare myself just in case. I don't know how to explain all of this to people who have never been down this road. I don't know how I'm supposed to feel or if all of my feelings are normal. I don't even know if there is even any such thing as normal anymore. My life feels like its turned upside down and inside out and everyone is just staring at me like I'm a nutcase!

On another note I quit my job this week. Not because I wanted to but because I have no choice and Its time to start preparing for little Parker to make his entrance into this world. Once again this made me compare my situation to everyone else all week long. I didn't quit my job to become a stay at home mom to a perfectly healthy baby like I had always dreamed of. But I quit my job to become a stay at home mom to a very sick and very fragile baby. I cried so many tears this week because I knew this was it, this was the beginning. I have nothing more to keep my mind occupied I will be sitting at home getting everything ready for Parker. 

Thank god for my husband because without him I would have crawled up in a cave somewhere and given up already. I just hope that he continues to keep his strength through all of this because I know Im going to need him more than ever in the coming months. I love you so much Adam and I know that you are going to be the best daddy in the whole world! Thanks for being my support and strength through all of this. Parker is the luckiest little boy in the world to have a daddy like you and I cant wait for him to get here so we can meet him!