Tuesday, March 30, 2010

A Visit to the ER and Purple Tulips

This last weekend turned out completely different than it was supposed to. Cory and I were supposed to go on the youth temple trip while our girls stayed with a good friend of mine. I was supposed to go to the YW broadcast with the young women in our ward. I was supposed to teach a lesson on Sunday and Cory was supposed to teach two lessons (in Elders Quorum and Sunday School). Instead, we ended up canceling everything because, instead, we spent all day Saturday, Sunday, and half of Monday, in the hospital with Hailey. It all started on Friday when I noticed that something wasn't quite right. Hailey was sleeping tons and she wasn't eating very well (both big signs that something was up). Later that night, I told Cory that something was really wrong and we needed to check her temperature (not that she really felt warm, she was just so lethargic). Sure enough, she had a fever of 101. We continued checking her temperature throughout the night (by morning it got up to 102) and ended up getting about 2 hours of sleep and worrying like crazy. We decided that Cory would go on the youth temple trip, and I would take the girls with me to the urgent care. To make a long story short....Cory and I ended up at the ER and my angelic friend, Jessica, came and picked the girls up from the hospital to stay with her for the weekend. They did TONS of tests to find the cause of the fever. Although there was a good chance that it was just a virus, they still didn't want to take any chances with a newborn, so they did every test imaginable. They started with an RSV test, which was negative. Then they took her blood and urine to do cultures and also to find out her white blood cell count. Because her white blood cell count and CRP (I have not idea what that is) were high, they had to do a spinal tap on her (which definitely makes it on my list of worst things I have ever had to witness as a mother). Then they did an X ray on her chest and admitted Hailey into the hospital to wait for the culture results and to start the rounds of antibiotic through the iv that they put in her hand (see picture above).

When I was carrying Hailey to the X-ray unit, I was alone with her for a time as we waited for the technician. As I held Hailey and looked into her pitiful little eyes, I began to plead...or maybe beg...with Heavenly Father that everything would be okay and that I would not have to lose another baby. I know that this prayer was not mine alone. I could see it all over Cory's face as he paced the floor and it was voiced by Cloey last night as she held Hailey for the first time since Friday. She said, "Oh Hailey I am so glad you're better. I was so afraid you would die." Although I knew deep down inside that everything would be okay, I also needed that extra comfort and peace that was immediately given as the thoughts in my heart were spoken aloud in my prayer.

Yesterday I came home from the hospital to an empty house. My friend, Celeste, was watching Cloey, and Katelund was at school. I started to unpack our stuff and then I got a phone call from a friend who told me how she had seen Katelund at school and how she was really struggling today and in the hallway she had just broken down. I was so worried about her. If I'd had a car, I would've driven to the school and taken her home. I then started worrying about Cloey and how she has been struggling trying to find her place as the middle child. Then the solutions came... I am going to have to shelter Hailey even more than I was. I can't let anyone touch her unless they wash their hands and there is no way I can ever take her out again. I will have to baby Cloey even more. Read her at least 10 books a day and play barbies and/or baby dolls with her for at least an hour everyday, and then for Katelund I will have lunch with her at school everyday, etc..etc.. Then reality came crashing in and I realized how impossible it would be to do all or any of those things every single day. Yes, I can do a little more with each child, but as an imperfect mother who is trying to be a YWs president, a good daughter, sister, friend, student, wife, etc...there is a limit to what I can and/or cannot do. In that overwhelming moment, I got on my knees and completely drenched my blanket with tears.

As I prayed, the real solution came....to do the very best that I can and trust in the Lord to make up the difference.

After I got out of the bath this morning, I checked on Hailey in her crib and then walked out to the kitchen. As I looked out the windows, I noticed something. Someone had come by and left some purple tulips at my front door. I don't know if you remember my parable of the tulips from last spring, but I think that whoever left those flowers must have been on an errand of the Lord. Through those purple tulips, my prayer has been answered, the burden that was too heavy to carry yesterday feels so much lighter, and the joy and hope have been renewed. I have no idea who brought the tulips by and I'm pretty sure that they don't know of their significance, but I do know a couple of things for sure. I know that today I was visited by an angel. I also know that the most powerful lessons I have learned in my life have been taught to me by the Sprit through nature, which tells me that not only is God a God who answers and hears our prayers, but also one who knows who we are completely and perfectly. I know that all things testify of Christ. The purple tulips have reminded me of many things, but one of the most significant things is a reminder to me that because of the Savior all things are possible. Whether it is causing the blind to see, the lame to walk, forgiving a sinner, overcoming death, healing a heart, or somehow miraculously making up the difference after we have done all that we can do.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Looking back at the last six weeks...

warning: this is a crazy-long post!!

I can't believe it has already been six weeks. It has flown by so quickly. Last night my friend Dianna asked me how a C-section recovery is as opposed to a vaginal delivery. It was actually really hard for me to answer that. This recovery has been wonderful in so many ways. Of course it has also had its tough moments....feeling like I'm leaking from everywhere, having to get out of bed when my abdominal muscles had been cut, sleepless days and nights, postpartum hormones, etc... But on the other hand it has been easy and wonderful because I have had a baby in my arms, two wonderful mothers who each spent two weeks pampering me and being the superwomen that they are, and having so much family come out for Hailey's blessing. In fact, at the end of my mother in law's two week visit, I decided that I need to have alot more babies because I LOVED having both of my moms come and play with me. :) They are each SO incredible!! I could go on and on about all of the MANY things that they have each taught me. It is funny how the older I get, the more amazing my mommy is. I can only hope and pray that I turn out to be half the mother that my own mom and my mother-in-law are. They will never know how much it meant to me to have them here with me.

On the 14th, was Hailey's baby blessing. My Dad flew from California (that is where he is working these days...my mom and him commute back and forth every week from Texas to California so that they can be home on the weekends since my Dad is serving as the Bishop in his ward). My mom, my sister (Andrea), my neice (Abby), and my nephew (Ethan) drove up from Texas. My father-in-law drove out from North Carolina (he came by himself b/c my mother-in-law was already here) and my brother-in-law (Logan), sister-in-law (Becca), and Roxi (their dog/baby) drove out from Virginia. It was SO MUCH FUN to have everyone here!!!! I was seriously just bursting with excitement to have so much family with us at church because we live in a ward where everyone seems to be related...except for us.

Then this last week my sister and her kids stayed with us for their Spring Break. We had such a great time. The girls couldn't have been more excited to play with their cousins and I couldn't have been more excited to play with my sister. :) The only bad part was Friday morning when they drove away because I knew that it was the end. The end of all of the visitors. Although it is good to be back in the swing of things and to be our own little family again....I am definitely feeling lonely this Monday morning. Can't they just all come back??? Here are some highlights of the last six weeks and if you keep scrolling down you will find tons of pics.

Week 1 and 2
*getting a massage from my mom
*laying awake late at night and into the early morning hours staring into the most angelic face ever
*looking forward to my 1-2 hour afternoon nap that my mom forced me to have everyday (missing that terribly now!!)
*going to Applebees with my mom and ordering our traditional salad that we get every time we're together
*eating some delicious home cooked meals made by my mom
*running out of drugs my second week home and having to wait until the holiday weekend was over to get anymore
*going to Lookout Mountain with my mom and dad
*suffering through some pretty crazy migraines (I think it was from the spinal)
*going to New Beginnings to speak and having to leave Hailey with my mom for the very first time (Cory was out of town)
*going to a couples Valentine party with Cory and leaving all three girls home with my mom and dad
*watching Katelund get so excited when me and my mom showed up to her class Valentine party (she never gets to have a grandma visit her at school).
*My mom helping me organize and rearrange the nursery
*crying as I had to say goodbye to my mommy

Week 3
ALL ALONE and so not ready to be!!! Thank goodness Cory was able to come home a little early on Monday and Tuesday, but it was a difficult week and I was really looking forward to week 4 when I would have some help again.

Week 4 and 5
*going thrift store shopping with Sherrie (one of our favorite things to do together)
*eating more delicious homecooked meals
*staying up late at night with my wonderful mother-in-law and eating our favorite treat (dark chocolate m&ms with gummy bears) and watching past episodes of Chuck and Leverage on Netflix
*taking Hailey to the doctor for her first set of shots outside of the hospital (one of my least favorite motherly duties)
*some major organizational projects (THANKS to my INCREDIBLY awesome mother-in-law)
*going to Target like a hundred times (I was trying to get some cute matching Easter/blessing dresses for the girls)
*taking Hailey to her first Young Women activity
*the stake YW basketball tournament (we got 2nd place...thanks to Coach Mann (Cory) and thanks to his dad and brother for helping out as referees for the tournament)
*having a house FULL of people I love for the whole weekend of Hailey's blessing

Week 6
*the volume level increasing to crazy high numbers as cousins ran and played like crazy!! They had so much fun together!!
*grocery shopping and making meals with my incredible cook of a sister
*planning and starting all sorts of creative projects (if only we had actually finished/started them all)
*staying up way too late and getting up way too early
*dying Andrea's hair while watching another crazy good episode of Chuck (it is one of my favorite shows...can you tell?)
*taking the kids to Chick Fil A for the kids eat free night and enjoying a night WITHOUT dirty dishes!
*going to Target like a hundred more times
*going to Katelund's school and eating lunch with her (Ethan really wanted to go to class with her... he is seriously SO ADORABLE)
*watching the girls be totally mesmorized by their cousin Abby. They wanted whatever she wanted and followed her wherever she went
*taking Hailey to her first ward council and trying to keep her from crying as I stood and bounced her in the back (ward council is on Wednesday nights after YWs...so she was really tired and fussy and I was just trying to keep my eyes open) :)
*taking Andrea and the kids downtown for a fun-filled day (oh wait...everything I had planned was closed...except for the delicious ice cream)
*saying goodbye once again with tears in my eyes
*missing my doctor's appointment since it was their last day in Tennessee, but I am still officially releasing myself!!!!!

And now....I am home alone with Hailey sleeping in her swing, me blogging and wishing I was sleeping, and Cloey begging me to play barbies and get her something to eat....back to real life. :)

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