Now that I have your attention let me get up on my soap box for a minute. Alright, alright I hear the collective groans and eye rolling commencing now as you read this but I promise it will be brief. These past two weeks have done nothing but remind me of how we take the simplest things for granted. Two of my close friends lost their fathers a day apart to cancer and then a week later a neice at 30 weeks gestation. All 3 of these events had me so deeply saddened for my friends and their family and it got me thinking about how the birth of Braden, everything we went through thru in 2010, and now these tragic ending to short lives has changed my outlook on life.
After talking to Kate about the tragic and unexplained loss of her neice I realized how I went through my entire pregnancy with Evan never contemplating the "What ifs." Of course I thought of these things in the first trimester but once you hit that 12 week mark don't you secretly think to yourself "I'm scottfree now...bring on the next 2 trimesters baby!" I never went in to an ultrasound thinking "I might not hear the heartbeat today" and luckily, with Evan, I never had to experience that pain. Now, with the boys, I entered the pregnancy with the same thinking until the day of our 20 week ultrasound when all that consumed my thoughts were "Gee I hope I can sneak a peak at the naughty bits of my kids and find out what we're having." Boy was I in for a surprise when I hear from the ultrasound tech "Well, I have some concerns about Baby 'B' " I think from that moment on I knew we didn't live in this fairytale world where "bad" things only happen to your friend's cousin's uncle's neighbor's stepchild.
Again we were reminded of how fragile life is when the boys decided to come 6 weeks early only to find out that Braden had a rare form of skeletal dysplasia termed Campomelic dysplasia . It was a "Wait and see" mentality from that point. Will Braden come home? Will Braden always be on a ventilator? Will Evan ever meet his other little brother? Will Braden walk? Will he live to see his first year? Things a family shouldn't have to question the day your babies are born. I then thought back to when I had Evan. You are supposed to get pregnant, have a dream pregnancy where you crave pickles covered in ketchup topped with icecream and chocolate chips, maybe throw up a couple times, give birth to a healthy baby, and go home together as a family 2 days after the baby is born. Wow...how life throws you a curveball when you least expect it.
Anyway I dont know where I meant to go with this because Jacob is crying and I'm losing my train of thought but what I think I want to say is if you have healthy kids or had uneventful pregnancies take a moment and thank God for the blessings and gift of life you were given and for the heartache you were spared. Also gauge your successes in life not based on the fancy cars or house you own or that wonderful career you may have. Gauge it on the way you bounce back and evolve your life and the choices you make when life throws you those inevitable curveballs or rotten lemons. I know that I now dont strive for a 5 bedroom house with no debt...ok wait now I'm a liar I still strive for that BUT I am more focused now on more present goals than I ever was. Things like "Lets get through today before tackling what tomorrow might throw at us." I look forward to small things like seeing Braden clap for the first time or sign "Mommy" with his chubby little hand or watch Jacob figure out how to play with the toy Uncle Seann and Aunt Wendy gave him while he hits the balls into the hole with his hammer or hear Evan tell Braden how much he loves him and to "have a good day buddy!" These are the little things that get me through the day. Don't get me wrong, I'm FAR from perfect and I DO and HAVE days where I think to myself "would anyone really fault me if I just crawl in a hole, cover myself up with self pity and let life go on around me" but I don't because life is just that...it goes on whether you like it or not so saddle up baby and enjoy the ride, the rise and fall that we all go through. Does it hurt some days? Hell yes it does but as much as you don't want to admit it (and you wont for a while) you come out stronger in the end.
So....as I step down from my rant I hope my ramblings made sense. Sometimes my inner monologue sounds so eliquent and I think "Yeah! Type that" and then my lack of sleep kicks in and my inability to express what Im thinking through typing is just that...rambling! So in closing I continue to be saddened by the losses my friends endured and ask that you pray for them to get through the lows life has dealt their way and in doing so be thankful for the "highs" and gifts you have now.
So now I am going to attempt to recap the last few days and add some pictures if I can figure out how to do so. This week we have been slammed by the Snot/Fever monster which plagued Evan for a solid 5 days and then so graciously decided to include Jacob in its elusive fan club. Finally today is the first day out of 6 where Jacob isn't running a fever. Braden, not to be left out of the rain cloud this week, decided to cough out his trache while I was in the bathroom so when I came running to his alarms I found him blue, SAT'ing in the low 70s, with a heartrate of about 70 bpm. I managed to tip his head back and put his trache back in, hold it in with one hand while I stretched to grab his Ambu bag and then proceeded to bag him back INTO conciousness and OUT of SATing as low as 27 and a heartrate of 50 all the while yelling at him to "please pink up for mommy." After a nice scare he obliged me and came out of it, looked at me, cried for a bit, and then smiled and swiped my cheek with his chubby hand like "Thanks mom...took ya long enough." I'm glad the girls at Mercy trained me so well not to panic and just react. Wish that I could stay cool, calm,and collected afterward but I guess its better to freak out AFTER he regains conciousness!
So thats my week in a nutshell how's yours been :) Heres some recent pics of the fun at the Byersdorfers! If I could figure out how to put captions under these pictures I would be golden. I guess I'll be asking some of the people I blog stalk how to do that ;)
Jacob attacked by the Fever Monster...poor baby