Wednesday, February 27, 2013


I have changed my blog address. If you want to follow, please shoot me an email and I'll send you the new address. Thanks!

Monday, February 25, 2013


2/25/13 Dear Addison, You are 5 months old. I haven't kept your blog up to date. If I weren't currently on rest from surgery, I probably wouldn't have time to type this. Remember, everything has a silver lining. :-) You are the greatest little thing in the entire world. You weigh about 18 pounds and you must eat every 3 hours--6oz formula mixed with a scoop or two of cereal. If you do not get your bottle EXACTLY when you demand it, you will scream your little head off until it hits your mouth. You love to smile and laugh and you have the most infectious laugh ever. You are very dramatic and when you get mad, you cry huge crocodile tears and make the most pitiful faces. I usually laugh at you and then you will start laughing too. You are really a very good baby. You only cry if you are hungry or sleepy. You don't really like to take naps during the day, but you do take a few 15 minute ones here and there. You sleep all night long. If you wake up, it's at around 5am and I will put you in the bed with me and you will sleep 2-3 more hours. I think you are the best baby in the world. You wear size 3 diapers. You already wear size 9 month clothes, but I love all of your little baby rolls. The hardest thing is trying to find shirts to fit your precious, rolly polly arms. I can't figure out what size shoes you wear. You have fat, but tiny little feet and I haven't been able to work your feet into any shoes at the store. I usually don't take you anywhere without a bow in your hair and you don't mind them at all. That's because you started wearing one in the NICU. Everybody stops to talk to you and you are getting quite shy. You don't like a lot of attention and will smile and try to hide your face. You love all baby food. You don't turn down anything. I've let you eat part of a popsicle and you get juice as a rare treat. You love television and computers and phones and remote controls! I think you are a little engineer or a computer tech or something! I'm sure you could outsmart me on the computer already. You babble mamamama when you are upset. You try real, real hard to cry sometimes. You scrunch your face up as ugly as you can make it and try to make pitiful noises, but you still look beautiful and it doesn't work. 50% of people say you look JUST like Daddy and 50% say you look JUST like me. I think you look most like Daddy, especially when you are sleeping. You are equally a Mama's girl and a Daddy's girl. I think you love us both. We noticed recently that if Granny is in the room, you only want her to hold you. You still stay with Granny and Aunt Kelli while I work. You love your cousins and they love you. I absolutely hate leaving you for work, but you are in the best hands and I know you will understand one day. Your birth mark is causing some scary moments and I wish it would just go away. I had to take you to a pediatric dermatologist because the birthmark started oozing blood. She did a biopsy and put a stitch in your little head. Your Daddy had to lay down on his back and hold you down on his stomach. It was horrible. You screamed to be let up. You don't like to be confined. If I ever try to put covers on you, you stick your legs straight up in the air and fuss until I take them off. The biopsy was questionable and the birthmark started oozing blood again so the dermatologist told us we must take you to a surgeon to have it removed. You will have to be put under general anesthesia and come home on pain medications. That has me very nervous. I know you are in God's hands, but I want God to have one more physician to tell me the surgery is absolutely necessary. The risk of cancer is very scary, but I will not let them cut you without high need. So, I am taking you to a specialist in Gainesville on March 6th and we will go from there. In the meantime, I keep ointment and a bandage on your head and you look like a little wounded patient, but you are still beautiful. You are extraordinarily beautiful. Always. When you sleep, you look exactly like a doll. You love to cuddle. You are cuddled to my arm now watching me type this and watching tv. You do a lot of things beyond your age. You already hold your own bottle that has grasping handles. You like to feed yourself. You will get so tickled about it, you will start laughing and the bottle will fall out of your mouth. You will not keep two socks on. Ever. You always have one sock. I love to dress you up and you love to spit up on everything I put you in. You still take Zantac for GERD. You still get hiccups a lot, like you did when I was carrying you. You like to play in your activity seat and you like to roll and scoot all over the floor. You are very curious about everything and I think you are really smart. You love your baby doll and like to hug her and laugh when I tell you that you are a sweet baby. You love to "read". You will lean in real close to everyone's shirt and read everything on it, and mail and magazines and books. You like to play with your hands and anyone's hands that are holding you. You aren't crazy about a pacifier. You usually like one only at night when you are very sleepy. You occasionally suck your thumb or your fingers. In short, you are the best thing in the universe and I can't believe that I could love you even more than I do now. You are the reason I get up each day. I will try to keep your blog more up to date, but don't hold me to it. :-) I love you! Mama

Thursday, December 6, 2012


10/19/12 Dear Addison, You are 2 weeks old. However, I feel that I've had you by my side for much longer. I could not imagine life without you now. I wouldn't even want to try. When the time comes for you to have your own baby, people will tell you over and over that your own child will bring about a type of love that you've never imagined. It's true. You will have to wait to experience it for yourself, as it is not describable.
The last several months of the pregnancy were fairly stressful. I had to see a high risk OB specialist and a regular OB twice a week. Every Tuesday and Thursday, they would hook monitors up to my uterus and your heart beat. They would then expect your heart to accelerate 15 beats above your baseline for 15 seconds, at least 3 times in 15-30 minutes. You never passed that test. The technicians would bring out a buzzer/vibrator and apply it to my stomach to scare you. They would do this as many as 3 times and you could have cared less. After they labeled your test "non-reactive" which is tech talk for "fail", they would perform an US and you would be just fine. We would watch you stretching and yawning on the screen. But the US tech would then find that your amniotic fluid was too high which put us at risk for a prolapsed cord…a fatal condition. These doctors never ceased to keep me worried to death about one thing or the other. But, as long as I saw you moving on the US I stayed somewhat calm.
After months of this routine you eventually had an US in which they attempted to get you to move for 30 minutes. You finally did move, but it was a scary time. At the next US, you were slow to move again. The amniotic fluid was still high. My own heart rate, even though medicated, was no longer controlled, and I was worried about how that affected you. During the first 7 months of the pregnancy, I was sick. Very sick. However, that did not compare to how I felt when I saw your movement declining. I became determined to get you out. I felt that you would be much safer outside the womb where we could take care of you. I was a woman on a mission. I explained to both doctor's that it was time for you to come out, and I meant now. I explained that we had done our part by attending biweekly appointments in which they would scare us to death but do nothing differently. I had enough. It was time for action. Both doctor's agreed that a c-section at 39 weeks would be best.
The day before your c-section, I started having contractions. I had them all day and wasn't sure we would make it to the next day. But, we did. Your Daddy and I woke up around 230 am to get ready to head to the hospital. We were hooked up to those same uterus and heart monitors that had haunted us along the way and we were able to see that I was having a few contractions. At 8:00 am, the doctor was ready to perform the surgery. They had me walk to the OR. Your Daddy was told to wait in the hall and they would call him before the incision was made.
I received a spinal block and was laid on the table. Almost instantly, I felt paralyzed from the upper chest down. My blood pressure quickly dropped to a systolic level of 56. I was turned on my side while my body heaved, trying to throw up. I honestly felt like I was dying and I was so worried about you. The anesthesiologist gave me epinephrine and another med to bump the blood pressure back up. In less than two minutes, I was feeling much better. They brought your Daddy in and the surgery started. My blood pressure periodically dropped during the procedure, but they would push more medication that helped. My heart rate was high and your Daddy kept telling me to calm down. I couldn't calm down. I was so anxious to heart your first cry and to hear that you were ok. I wanted to see your little face pop over the surgical drape.
Our surgery was on a Friday. On Tuesday of that week, your US showed that you were clearly head down and ready for delivery. After what seemed like forever, I heard the doctor reach your little body and announced that you were frank breech…"butt first". I heard them say that I had a lot of amniotic fluid and to watch out. I heard them say that you had meconium in the fluid. I laid there waiting for that first cry. It never came. They pulled you from me and you were limp. You didn't cry. You didn't make a sound. They didn't show you to me. The OR was very quiet. They whisked you away and I could hear them hitting your back. You weren't making any sound. They wouldn't let your Daddy go check on you. It was my worst nightmare. We were scared to death. I've never been that scared and I still have trouble thinking about that time. The pictures that the staff took of your limp body are hard to look at.
Finally, they let your Daddy go check on you while they continued to work on you in the OR. I was left paralyzed and cut open. Helpless. I kept asking over and over and over, "Is she ok?" Nobody could tell me, because nobody knew. I could still hear them hitting your little body and working on you. I couldn't hear your Daddy. I knew that you were not ok.
After what seemed like an absolute eternity, your Daddy came to tell me that you were "beautiful and perfect" but they were still working on you. He went back over and about 5 minutes later, they brought you over and laid you very close to my face. They passed you to your Daddy and he held you there. My first memory of you is the softness of your face. I couldn't believe how soft it was. You still weren't crying. You had little bubbles coming out of your mouth and they didn't let you stay with me long.
You were taken away again and I was left to get sewn up. It was torture. I was desperate for information. Your Daddy went to the nursery with you. I was eventually taken to my recovery room. While the nurse assessed me, I asked when I could see you, when I could hold you, when I would know how you were. I was not ok. I have great difficulty even typing this because I experienced a deep, deep fear. Eventually, your Daddy arrived back in my room. He explained that you were taken to the NICU and you were on oxygen. It was assumed that you had some fluid in your lungs, because you were breathing too fast and your oxygen saturation level was below 80%. I sent your Daddy back to be with you and started asking my nurse when I could see you. She said I would have to stay in the room a while until I resumed some feeling in my legs, but that she would attempt to wheel my bed into the NICU after I was considered stable.
I was in some state of shock, I think. I just laid there, stared at everybody that came to the hospital to see you, and waited. After an eternity, they wheeled me to your bedside. I was not prepared. You had so many tubes and lines all over and inside of your little body. I am a nurse and still nothing could have prepared me. I begged to hold you. The nurse told me no, but she must have seen something in my eyes because she suddenly put you in my lap for about 10 seconds before taking you back. She then informed me that I would not be able to see you again until the next day because I would not be allowed to leave my bed due to the need to recover. I obeyed until 8pm that night. I told your Daddy I was going to the NICU to see you. Period. They couldn't stop me. So, he went and found us a wheelchair and I unhooked my IV fluids, my blood pressure cuff, pulse oximetry, SCD's, and picked up my catheter and made my way into that chair. We made it to the NICU and I sat in the chair by your side. They wouldn't let me hold you or feed you. You were receiving nutrition through IV fluids. I was so worried that you were hungry. I wasn't able to stay long because my nurse found me. She said that her nurse's aide told her I was a missing patient so she started looking for me. She lectured me a little, but it was totally worth it.
The next day we visited you as often as we could. They still wouldn't let us hold you and that was very, very hard to deal with. You had visitors, but they would only let parents and grandparents see you. The physician made rounds and informed us that if your oxygen saturation stayed high enough on room air through two feedings, he would let us have you in our room that night, starting at 8pm. That was great news! We went and visited you at 5pm. I told the nurse that I still hadn't held you or fed you. She said that was about to change and finally, finally you were placed in my arms. The feeling was surreal. You had an IV in your head and it just made you look like you were in pain. I asked them repeatedly to take it out, but they said they couldn't. We stayed as long as we could and were told that we couldn't visit from 6-8, but if you passed your oxygen test, we could come get you at 8pm and to check back then.
At 8pm, we got the wheelchair out and started out of our room. We were met by your nurse who said that you were free to room with us! That was the best news ever. I felt instant relief to finally be able to have you near me and to be able to take care of you myself. You still had an IV in your head and it kept falling in your face so your Daddy got some tape from one of the nurses and taped it up. He said it looked like you had a single dreadlock.
We enjoyed showing you off to visitors and we spent a lot of time begging you to eat as much as the doctors said you had to in order to be discharged. We were told that we would likely be released the next day and we were. We dressed you in the going home dress that we picked out, took a million pictures of you, and took you home. We couldn't wait to take you in your nursery and put you in your bassinet.
We had a hard time getting you to eat at first, but unlike at the hospital, I mostly let you set your own schedule and eat how much you feel you need. You don't like to sleep at night, but you sure sleep a lot during the day. You are bright eyed and have a funny little personality. You are already smiling and you pop your eyes open at the sound of your name. You refuse to sleep in your bassinet. You scream your little head off if we try to leave you in it. You like to sleep right by me, with your face glued to mine. You will occasionally sleep in your moses basket, if it's in the bed with us. But, you still wake up and cry to sleep with me every couple of hours. I try to let you and then return you to your basket as much as possible. You are already so spoiled. But, I don't care. I like to cuddle with you at night. You like to eat a couple ounces every two hours. You are a hard sleeper during the day or when you are in your car seat. No matter the loudness of noise, you will sleep away. You hate to take a bath and you hate for your cord stump to be cleaned. You don't like us to dress you and you fight as hard as possible while we are changing your diapers or dressing you. You are actually pretty strong for a two week old. You aren't overly obsessed with your paci, but you do like it. You make a noise that sounds like a goat when you are happy and content. You love to ride in the car and fall asleep almost immediately once you are put in your car seat. You are a very beautiful child and not just because you are mine. You have genuine beauty. You like to listen to your Daddy read to you and you like music. You have little monkey toes that make your feet look like hands.
You have a rare birthmark on the right side of your head. It's about the size of a half dollar and you are bald there, and you will never grow hair in that area. You have to see a dermatologist soon. From what we're told, you will have a high chance of developing melanoma after you hit puberty and they will want to remove it at that time. Your hair is already growing fast and covering the bald spot. You also have to undergo an ultrasound of your hips because you were breech. They will rule out hip dysplasia. Because of the position you were in, inside the womb, you like to sleep with your feet straight up in the air! It's the funniest thing!
You are absolutely perfect.

Friday, August 17, 2012


I started writing this blog last week when I was 31 weeks. I've been slow to get things posted. I'm going to post some pictures later, but wanted to post an update since it's been a while. Time seems to be going fast and slow at the same time. We are in the single digit countdown now. EIGHT weeks to go. Unbelievable. It really brings a sense of urgency to get things done. The nursery is almost complete. We are proud of it. I will post pictures once we add the final touches. I recently had to complete a 3 hour glucose challenge, because I failed my 1 hour challenge to test for gestational diabetes. I was allowed to do alternative carbohydrate loading as the glucola caused me to get dizzy, vomit, and have a very high heart rate. I was told that I could drink two 20 oz bottles of coke. I was NOT told that I had to consume both bottles in FIVE minutes. The lab guy waited until I had two minutes to go and only part of one bottle completed to inform me of this news. I was not a happy camper. I told him to cancel the test. I came back the next week and got to eat Skittles this time. This may sound easy, but it wasn't. I had to eat 4.2oz of Skittles in 15 minutes. Try it. It's hard. I almost ran out of time. I was shoving them in and had chipmunk cheeks at the end. I managed to get them down, except for the wad that I saved in my cheek and threw in the trash as soon as I left the lab. I then had to get my blood drawn every hour for 3 hours. It was pretty much torture. But, I passed the test with flying colors! Yay! No gestational diabetes. Aunt Regina, Kelli, and Mama had a baby shower for me. I was totally overwhelmed by the whole event. When Kelli was pregnant with Kaitlyn, I hid in the bathroom and cried the majority of the shower. Don't get me wrong. I was thrilled for Kelli. I was sad for myself, because I had already been trying for many years to get pregnant. So, when I walked into my own shower, I started bawling. Tears, snot, the works...classy. Not only was everything beautifully decorated, but seeing my family and friends there for ME did me in. I really appreciated people taking time out of their busy lives to be there. I still get teary eyed when I think about the people that showed up. Missing were both of my grandmothers. That makes me emotional as well. I wish they were here to see this precious baby. The shower was held at Murray's Grille in Yulee. Aunt Regina said she was disappointed in the food and even gave a small speech to make sure people knew what the unrecognizable stuff was. It was pretty funny. We spent a couple of days washing tiny clothes and organizing baby gear. That was overwhelming, as it provided a big sense of reality. I'm pretty much a big ball of emotions at the moment! I had two doctor's appointments on 8/7. The first was with the high risk specialist. Addison is doing great! She weighed 3lb 5oz. She has big, chubby cheeks and we love her so much already. We think she has an attitude because she gets mad if she's touched. She will either freeze or start doing somersaults to get away. It's been difficult for the doctor to find her heartbeat at times because she is trying to get away. She gets all that from her Daddy. Ha, ha. I was told at that appointment that I'd have to start attending NST's (heart rate testing) and Ultrasounds every Tuesday and Friday until I deliver. Phew! Tuesday's testing went ok. Addison kept wiggling away from the heart monitor but she passed the test. We got really good views of her face during the ultrasound. Its a BPP (biophysical profile) and she scored an 8/8. Today's testing didn't go quite as smoothly. They wanted Addison's heart rate to reach the 150's, but it stayed in the 130's. She failed her NST and we had to do another BPP (ultrasound) which she passed. The doctor said that some of the medicine I take to keep my heart rate controlled could be going to her, or she could have been just resting. They attempted to startle her by pressing a vibrating buzzer to my stomach. She could have cared less. The doctor brought up that my amniotic fluid is on the higher side (sigh). The US tech brought up that she has hair! She is so, so, so cute with her chubby cheeks and pouty lips. So, I am slightly concerned but trying not to totally freak out. We go again on Tuesday. Prayers that she will pass this time won't hurt! (I'll post pictures when I can.)

Saturday, July 21, 2012


We had our 4D Ultrasound today. So, so, so sweet. I really can't believe she's mine. True to Addison form, she did not want to cooperate. I had to exit the room and walk the floors to shake her up a little bit. Overall, I am thrilled with the pictures we got. I am beyond impatient for her to get here now! We also got a video of her, but I will have to play around with this and see if I can figure out how to post it. Here she is!

Friday, July 13, 2012


Yes, I am starting to look like a manatee.
But, the good news is that I continue to have better days. Instead of 24/7 nausea, I have bouts of nausea. I'll take it. I am also getting out a lot more, which is great. So I'll take the largeness in exchange. Ok, I got the report from my doctor about the glucose test and the bloodwork. See...what had happened WAS...I might have drank some chocolate milk the morning of my test. What? They told me I didn't have to fast! So, the nurse called today and told me I failed the test and would have to do the 3 hour screening. I confessed about the milk and told her I wanted to repeat the one hour test,after fasting,to be sure. She agreed so I will do that Monday. It made me very sick and I had a hard time holding it down without fasting, so I'm not sure how I will manage Monday. Maybe I should bring a pillow and just lay on the floor of the lab. My iron level also came back low, so I started an iron supplement today. No biggie. The nurse said that this is probably the reason I have been so exhausted. Here is the bassinet we bought.
I love it! Yes, I know we can't have a blanket and a stuffed animnal in it while the baby is using it, but I decided to dress it up until she gets here. Kelli and I went to Pottery Barn to pick it up, and I almost had a pregnancy induced hormonal meltdown. Cliff called ahead of time to be sure the one I wanted was in stock. It was the brown bassinet, like we got, but with pink bedding. When we arrived, I was told that they didn't have the brown bassinet or the pink bedding. I really wanted to cry. It would've been a classy thing to have a 2 year old meltdown at the Pottery Barn. Cashier dude looked again and said he DID have the brown bassinet, but not the pink bedding, and I couldn't get it until September. I told him just to sell me the bassinet with all white bedding and I am happy enough with it. I think the bassinet has a timeless look to it and it's very well made. Look what Addison received in the mail today.
These took me back to when my grandmother, Magranny, read these very books to me and my cousins. My grandfather still has them in his house. I think I might be about to have another hormonal moment if I think about it too much! I am overwhelmed by the amount of stuff that we still have to buy for this child. It is insane. I was up last night with nausea and I just about drove my self crazy worrying about carseats, strollers, formula, etc, etc. I know it will eventually come together. At least she has a bed! I'll let y'all know how the second glucose screening goes...if I do it...just kidding, just kidding.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012


We had another ultrasound with the high risk specialist today and she is 100% a girl! Yay! We had to buy her some celebratory clothes.
Herein lies the problem with today's technology--it creates WORRY! When we were babies, our parents weren't even told the sex before delivery, much less things such as growth percentiles and amniotic fluid levels. With today's fancy, smancy technology, I was told that Addison is in the 41st percentile for growth and I have slightly too much amniotic fluid. Causes for excessive aminotic fluid are defects with the baby's swallowing mechanism, gestational diabetes, and unknown factors. I'm being tested tomorrow for gestational diabetes. If I don't have it, and I hope I don't, how am I supposed to deal with this information? Worry, that's how! I would have been better off not knowing. The doctor did say that he would rather me have too much, than too little and he seemed unphased. I, on the other hand, wanted more answers. She weighs 1 lb, 14 ounces. She kicks like she weighs 114 pounds! I can't believe she's that tiny and I am this huge. What in the world??? The doctor was also nonchalant about her being in the 41st percentile, informing me that I didn't want to give birth to a big baby. No, I don't. But, I would feel more comfortable if she was at least average! My appetite has increased and I am hungry about every two hours, to the point that I feel like I'm going to starve to death. I have put on about 7 pounds....finally. So, I am feeding her. I've always pictured her as tiny. Maybe she's just supposed to be smaller than normal. We had a rude ultrasound tech today so we didn't get to see very much of Addison herself. She did confirm that she was still a girl and that was a huge relief. We've already purchased so much pink that people might think her nursery is Pepto Bismol themed. Both of my parents got to watch the ultrasound today. Then we all went to Babies R Us to look for a bassinet and finish registering. Grandpa bought her these shoes and a baby book.
Tomorrow, Kelli and I will travel to Jacksonville once again so that I can get some bloodwork and drink the dreaded sugar water for the glucose tolerance test. It is SO gross. I'm not sure how I will keep from throwing it up. I have been having better days lately. I am still usually at least always sick in the mornings and I am VERY tired, but I have been able to get out more and some days I even feel human. I am continuing to get quite large and have to learn new maneuvers for simple things. I am considering a new technique for getting out of bed. It's called the roll and fall. Roll off the mattress, land on my knees, and then crawl around the house because I sure can't get up off the floor. In other news, I would like to wish my youngest niece, Emily Lorraine, a very happy 5th birthday! Aunt Cindy wishes you were still this little...