Thursday, February 4, 2016

My Second Loss

My Second Loss
I wanted to write this all down before I start to forget the details.

Logan and I wanted to get another baby here, but I wasn’t ready to commit to “trying” again.  You know, the tracking, the testing for ovulation, the counting days, the waiting to take the pregnancy test only to see a negative and to feel like a failure.  We did that for SO LONG to get Landon here, and it was terrible.  Our compromise was we would stop using birth control after we got home from our Disneyland trip, and that was it.  We didn’t pay much attention to it after that.

My cycles are always wonky, not consistent, different lengths, just weird.  So when some cycles were longer than others, I didn’t pay much attention to it, until this past month.  I realized it had been a long time since my last period.  I took a test, it came back negative, but I wasn’t bothered by it, and I waited for my period to start.  After another week, I took another test on a Sunday morning before church.  It came back POSITIVE.  Like dark, solid positive line that popped up super-fast.  Logan and I were shocked!  We were hugging each other and we were so excited at the news.  We hadn’t needed to get on the “trying” roller coaster; we were going to be blessed with the sweetest surprise possible.  We decided to keep it as our little secret until we knew more about what was going on.  The whole day we were on a cloud.  Logan kept smiling at me and squeezing my hand.  It’s amazing how special and sweet that news is for a couple.

The next morning I called my ob office.  I had had low progesterone with Landon and I wanted to see if that was going to be a concern with this pregnancy as well.  They called in a prescription for me and had me come in for blood work.  Tuesday afternoon I got a phone call from the office.  My progesterone was indeed low, as we had expected.  But also, my hCG was really low as well.  The nurse told me sometimes things like that just happen, and maybe I wasn’t as far along as I had thought I was.  She said to think positively, but also that realistically, things might not be viable.  I was to go in the next day to get more blood work done.

We decided we wanted prayers on our side.  I called my mom and let her know.  We told Logan’s parents.  We told our siblings, my birth family, grandparents, and a few other close friends.  We wanted prayers, and lots of them, going for our baby.  I was a wreck.  My first miscarriage was the hardest trial I have been through, and I was terrified I would go through it again.  Logan gave me several blessings that week to comfort me and give me strength, and we prayed our hearts out over this baby.

Wednesday I had blood work done again.  That evening the nurse called me back.  My levels had gone up…not as much as they wanted, but they were up.  I was to come in the next week for an ultrasound to check on the baby and to see how everything was going at that point.  Thursday I was nauseous!!  That’s a sign that your hCG is continuing to rise, and I had never been so happy to feel sick before!  My symptoms continued to increase as the weekend wore on.  Saturday night we were saying family prayers and thanking Heavenly Father for sending us this little baby.  We were all so happy and feeling hopeful.

And then Sunday.

I opened up my eyes and I just knew.  Before I even moved.  Before the pain hit.  I just knew.  I was going to lose my baby that day, and it was going to be bad.  I pushed the thought away, and rolled over to get out of bed to go to the bathroom, and that’s when the tugging pain started in my left hip.  “Ectopic Pregnancy” went through my head, and I tried to shut that out.  It couldn’t be.  Not to me.  Please, not another loss.

I walked to the bathroom to pee, and the pain intensified.  Logan was in the shower and I told him that I was hurting.  And then I began to sweat.  I became nauseous and I leaned over the toilet bowl, sure I was about to puke.  Logan said he thought maybe I was just pregnant nauseous, and after he was done with his shower, he’d help me get breakfast. Hopefully the food would help settle my stomach.  And then I passed out on the bathroom floor.  I came to and my babies were looking at me so scared.  Logan got out of the shower and helped me get to the bed, shuffling our kids away to get breakfast.  Everything felt worse with each passing minute, and I had a very strong feeling we needed to go to the Emergency Room. 

“Ugh, Camille, no.  That’s going to cost so much money.  Just rest, you’ll be okay,” was all I kept telling myself.  And another wave of pain hit.  And another.  And another.  It was getting worse.  I couldn’t stand up to get Logan in the kitchen.  I grabbed my phone and called my mother in law, who lives upstairs.

“Deana, I think I’m having an ectopic pregnancy.”  Another wave of pain. “Please come get the kids, Logan is taking me to the hospital.” Another wave.

Deana came and grabbed them and got their church clothes and took them upstairs.  I pulled on some shoes and my coat, and Logan helped me to the car. 

By the time we got there I could barely walk.  They rushed a wheelchair to me and helped check me in.  Logan did all the talking as I was crumpled up in pain.  They got us back in a bed and talked to us about I’m not sure what.  An ultrasound tech came to get me to go do the ultrasound and helped me sit up, which I could barely do.  He said “Yeah, we’re not moving her until we get her some pain meds.”  At this point I felt like I was being stabbed over and over again, the pain then radiating from that spot to fill my entire body.  I started to cry to Logan “I want to die.  I want to die.  Take this pain away.”  And then I started to black out.  I would come back around and then everything would go dark again, back around, and dark, back around, and dark.  I couldn’t move, I couldn’t talk, I couldn’t breathe.  (I think this is when my tube was bursting.)

Somebody came in and got an IV started on my arm as I was coming in and out, and they gave me a dose of Morphine and Phenergan.  My arm started to burn and feel heavy, and then the pain calmed down.  I got very sleepy and could barely communicate.  I guess after that they wheeled me back for an ultrasound, I remember the room being dark, I remember clicks and beeps of the machine, I remember hurting whenever the tech would push on my left side.  I also remember dreaming I was playing Toy Story Midway Mania in Disneyland, so there you go…on a drug trip my brain takes me to Disney.  And then I was suddenly back in my other room, shivering and having them put blanket after blanket on me and I just could not warm up.

Everything felt like it was taking hours, but Logan later told me it all happened pretty fast.  A doctor came in and confirmed it was ectopic.  An on call ob came in and talked to me.  Dr. Cloward?  She was really pretty and really nice.  She told me I was going in for surgery, and they would need to remove my tube.  They saw blood pooling on my ultrasound and they were worried about me hemorrhaging.  An anesthesiologist came in and talked about the sedatives.  Logan signed a bunch of forms for me, and I texted some family to let them know I was going in for surgery.  I still could barely stay awake from the morphine.

They wheeled me back, I kissed Logan goodbye, and they shot something in my IV and told me I wouldn’t remember much after that.  I looked up and saw all these “PACU” signs and wondered what it meant.  And then I was waking up.

They explained I did indeed lose my tube.  They were glad I was at the hospital as early as I was, because of it I didn’t lose as much blood as they were anticipating and I avoided a blood transfusion.  I was so drowsy and out of it, but I looked over at a doorway, and there was my sweet Sadie holding someone’s hand and bouncing up and down watching me.  I signed “I love you” to her and she signed it back, focusing so hard to get her fingers right.  She was so worried about me and later told me she hated the baby and didn’t want any more in our family because she didn’t want me to get owies again.  It broke my heart to hear her say that, all I wanted was for that baby to be back with me, but I was grateful I was alive to be with my other two babies.  Apparently you can bleed out pretty fast with a ruptured tube, I didn’t realize it was so life threatening.

Eventually we got back to a recovery room.  Sadie went home with Deana.  My parents were there.  Logan was there.  I just wanted to sleep.  They had me order food and take more medicine.  We watched Food Network on tv.  My parents ended up going home while Logan went to go get my prescriptions filled.  I got checked out at about 7:00 that night and we headed home.

I started bawling in the car.  I was completely hysterical and wracked with guilt.  Because of my body, because of me, we lost another baby.  I lost my tube.  It would be harder than it was even before to get pregnant again.  And here I am, married to the best father I have ever seen, and I was holding him back from having a gaggle of kids, and he probably wishes he had married someone else who could have all of his babies easier and quicker than I could.  I guess I had started rambling these things out loud, because Logan pulled the car over and told me to knock it off.  I’ll never forget that. He said, “Camille, never, ever, ever say that again.  Never!  Do you hear me?  I want you.  Only you.  I don’t care if we have 2 kids or 20, as long as you are the one by my side, that’s all I want.  Don’t you forget it or tell yourself otherwise.”  And I was a wreck.  He is better than I deserve.  I am still so devastated that I can’t give him a dozen kids with ease, because he is such an amazing father.  But I am so grateful that he is mine, and that he wants to be mine, and that he wants me—as broken and imperfect as I am.

My sweet in laws had already gotten my kids fed and in their jammies.  Deana had made us two plates of food and left them downstairs for us.  Logan heated up the food and we ate, and then he put me to bed and then the kids to bed.

My sister in laws rallied around us for the next few days to care for my babies while Logan was at work.  I can’t lift anything heavier than a gallon of milk, so I can’t hold Landon.  Also it hurts to walk around, and my medicine makes me drowsy, so I wouldn’t be able to care for my kids well.  They have had play dates with cousins every day this week, and they come home exhausted, happy, and well fed.

So many people have brought us dinner this week.  My family has been fed and I haven’t had to worry about it at all.  A friend sent me a Barnes and Noble gift card and told me to buy a book that helped her heal from her miscarriage, which should be shipped to my house today.  Another group of friends sent me a bouquet of Edible Arrangements.  Another dropped off a sack of DVDs to watch while I am down and out.  Another sent me a sweet note with a gift card to get a treat.  Literally hundreds of my friends have checked on my through social media or texting.  I can feel so many prayers being poured over us to help sooth my soul.  So many miracles and so many angels have come together to help my family through this nightmare.

I am heartbroken.  Completely devastated.  I wish nothing more than being able to be pregnant again instead of having had this happen.  I’m scared for the future, but I’m trying to not focus on it yet.  There is nothing I can do about it yet; I just need to get better physically.  I am so beyond grateful that I have had Logan with me through all of this.  I hate that this happened, but he has been so wonderful, it has really helped remind me of what a wonderful man I am married to.

For all of those that have helped us—thank you.  It has not gone unnoticed, and I love you all.  You are all angels in my eyes, and I have been thanking Heavenly Father for all of you over and over.


Sunday, October 12, 2014

Mr. Landon Chase--A Birth Story

We have another baby; a sweet little man.  He made us fight to get him here, and we were left waiting much longer than we had wanted, but I am so glad he is here.  My little miracle man, Landon Chase Spence, was born at 37.5 weeks on September 30, 2014, at 6:57 p.m.  He weighed 7 lbs 9 oz, and was 19” long, and we love every single bit of him.

In October of 2012 we decided to start trying again for baby #2.  A few days later we actually were quite surprised when we found out we were actually already pregnant!  We were so excited and couldn’t believe everything was falling into place so easily.  We decided to wait until Thanksgiving to announce to our families.  We bought Sadie a shirt that said “Big Sister” on it to wear to Thanksgiving Dinner.  That day we stopped by Logan’s parents’ house and took Sadie’s jacket off to reveal her shirt, and after we repeated the same thing at my parents’ house.   We were so excited to share our news, and everyone was so excited for us as well.  Two days later, though, everything came crashing down.  At around 4:00 in the morning I woke up soaking wet, I thought “Oh my goodness, how embarrassing!  I just wet the bed!” So I went into the bathroom, but when I flipped on the light I was covered in blood.  I was in complete shock and just started saying “Oh, my gosh” over and over again.  Logan heard me and came into the bathroom, and when he saw all the blood he just started crying.  Then it hit me, I had lost my baby.  We just held each other and cried.  Even though we hadn’t been pregnant for very long, we were both attached, and we wanted that baby more than anything. 

For the next year and a half we were on a roller coaster trying to get pregnant again.  We kept trying for a while, and after several months of no success, we went to a fertility specialist.  I have a biseptate uterus that we had discovered during my c section with Sadie (everything looks normal from the outside, but is heart shaped on the inside, so I have an extra wall in the middle that makes two different chambers in there).  We were told if an embryo ever implanted on the extra wall, I would miscarry because the wall wouldn’t be able to handle the weight of the baby, which was scary to think about.  We pursued having a surgical procedure to have the wall removed, but kept running into problems with my insurance and could never get coverage.   Twice we scheduled the surgery, and right before would have to cancel because of my insurance. 

We moved to a new ward in American Fork, and the bishop of the ward is a family practitioner.  We had talked with him about what was going on and he recommended an OB, Dr. Haskett, who could help us with our insurance so we could get our surgery.  I was very down and sick of being on the roller coaster ride of trying to get our next baby here, and I was looking forward to trying to find the next step in the road to go down to make some real progress.  I had an appointment scheduled for mid-February for a consultation.  February 1 I was due to start my period again.  I decided on a whim I would take my last pregnancy test I had in the medicine cabinet.  I wanted to take it so I could see the negative and get over not being pregnant once again that month.   Much to my surprise, the test came back positive.  I could not believe it!  I got Sadie ready in a hurry and went over to visit Logan at work.  I took him into an office area away from everyone and asked Sadie to show Daddy her “new toy”—I had given her the positive test.  She handed it to him and as soon as he saw it he started to cry.  He gave me a priesthood blessing that day and told me no matter what happened during the pregnancy, I would be able to learn to rely on family for support…which made me worry that I would once again lose this baby and have to rely on family to pull me through once again.

When I hit 6 weeks, I woke up feeling very crampy on my right side.  I tried to push the worry aside, but after a few hours I decided to call in to the OB to ask about it.  They thought it sounded like it could be an ectopic pregnancy, and told me to go into radiology so I could be checked out.  After a few ultrasounds, I got some pretty good news…baby was great, I even saw the heartbeat, and was implanted in a really good spot, far away from the extra wall.  We were slightly worried because the baby was in the right chamber (Sadie grew in the left), and we were concerned maybe my body wouldn’t be able to stretch out enough on that side to hold a full term baby.  We also found a clot that had formed under the placenta, and we also discovered my progesterone levels were low, both of which could cause miscarriage.  My doctor was so incredible helping us get through the scary first trimester.  I was put on pelvic rest, progesterone supplements, and he had me come in almost every week to check the progress of the clot and to see the baby on an ultrasound to see how everything was developing.  Over time, everything looked great, and the clot resolved itself. 

The rest of the pregnancy went uneventful, more or less.  We found out we were having a boy at the end of May, which was a shock.  Sadie kept telling us we were having a girl, complete with many details about this little girl.  It took me a while to wrap my head around having a boy, and I even wondered if I would be able to love a little boy as much as I loved my little girl (news flash:  I was so wrong, I am completely obsessed with my little boy).  Baby Landon was in a breech position and we had scheduled a c section for him for October 13.

On Saturday, September 20, at 36 weeks, I started having a lot of pain and contraction-like cramps.  I started timing them and as they got closer I had Logan take me to the hospital to get checked.  Much to our surprise, Landon had flipped head down (which is why I was hurting so badly), and the stress of him flipping had gotten my body stressed enough to start contractions.  Because he was head down, we decided to try for a VBAC (vaginal birth after ceserean).  I was still early and not progressing very fast, so they gave me some Percocet to help with pain and slow down the contractions to give Landon some more time to grow.  Sunday night, contractions started up again and we headed in to get checked again.  Same story, little progress, so more Percocet to slow things down again.  The next Friday night things started up again really hard, we headed back to the hospital sure that this would be the real deal.  Nope!  Again, little progress, but I was in a lot more pain.  They gave me a morphine shot and sent me home to rest.  My goodness, that completely knocked me out and I slept until about 3:00 in the afternoon the next day.

Logan and I were both frustrated and tired of the contractions and the false alarms.  Monday, things picked back up, but Logan refused to go in unless something major happened, so we waited it out.  Tuesday I had an OB appointment, and I was still contracting (and exhausted because I hadn’t been sleeping well due to said contractions).  As we were going through the appointment he asked how Landon had been moving around…and it hit me…I hadn’t felt him move all morning.  He checked for his heartbeat, which was still strong, but sent me to the hospital for a non-stress test, where they monitor how the baby is handling everything in there. 

I was having very consistent contractions, and finally started to show more progress.  My OB came to check me during his lunch break, and stripped my membranes to see if he could get me to progress a little faster so they could admit me.  He went to go do a c section on another girl and checked me again, I had finally progressed to 5 cm, so they decided to admit me and break my water.  As I got into my bed in labor and delivery, my water actually broke on its own, and everything got super painful.  My contractions got very intense and I was not handling super well.  The lovely epidural guy got there quickly and started on my epidural.  As soon as everything kicked in and I was feeling really good, Logan finally arrived!  He was at school this whole time and I didn't want him missing much school if I was about to have a baby, but my goodness, he missed out on seeing all the really painful stuff.  An hour after my epidural went in, they checked me again and I was to 8 cm.  30 minutes after that I was at a 10 and ready to push!!  There was a little bit of meconium in the water when it broke, meaning Landon had been a little distressed through all of this and pooped in there, which can be problematic, so they had some extra people there to help him out in case he had trouble starting to breathe. 

I pushed for about 30 minutes, and Landon started showing distress.  With every contraction his heart rate kept dropping, so they put me on oxygen to help him out a little bit.  Ten minutes later the on call doctor came in (my OB couldn’t stay because he had to go help coach his son’s flag football team), right as he walked in I started gushing a lot of blood.  He suspected my placenta was starting to tear on the inside and he was concerned with everything else going on.  He gave me a small episiotomy and put in some forceps to help pull Landon out a little faster.  Another huge gush of blood, more meconium, and Landon’s heart rate and oxygen levels just tanked.  The doctor looked at me and said “Camille, you have to push with all you have, you need to get your baby out now, because he isn’t handling this well.”  I pushed with all I had in me, and the doctor used the forceps, and we got Landon out on that push.  He was so blue and limp.  They put him on the little warmer table and put a tube into his lungs to suction him out really well.  He wasn’t crying at all.  I remember watching them pick up his arms and they just fell right back down.  He had all these tubes in him and he looked so pale and all of these medical people were just working so fast on him.  I couldn’t stop crying, I was so worried about him.  After a few minutes that felt like an eternity, he began to pink up, and he did a little squeak of a cry as they gave him the vitamin k shot.  I was so relieved!  They wrapped him up and put him on my chest and I got to hold him for a little while before they took him down to the nursery for his tests.

Landon was doing so well, I on the other hand, was not.  Because he had to come out so fast, I had torn a LOT.  I had a 4th degree tear, which means essentially I tore all the way through to my bum hole (sorry, that’s the least graphic explanation I can come up with).  It took a really long time to get me stitched up.  I asked the nurse what the highest degree of tearing there was (I though t it was five, so maybe I wouldn’t be TOO bad), but I was put out when she told me “Honey, the highest amount of tearing is basically what you have right now.  You basically had a c section through your bum.  Don’t worry, we’ll do all we can to help you stay as comfortable as possible.”  So yay, I knew I was going to have another long, painful recovery ahead of me.  After they were done monitoring me after delivery, my nurse helped me out of bed to go to the bathroom.  While I was in the bathroom I passed out, and after I came to I threw up.  So I needed to be monitored a little longer again.  Finally I was able to go downstairs to be with my family.  I was surprised to find my family, and a lot of Logan’s family was already there with Logan and Landon.  I was really sad I had missed watching Sadie meet her little brother for the first time, but Logan told me all about it and he had taken a lot of pictures for me (but I hope that doesn't happen again with the next baby). 

The rest of my stay in the hospital was painful, but I felt like I was handling it pretty well.  I could get out of bed easier than after my c section, but it was still very painful to get around, and I could not get comfortable sitting because….my bum had been exploded and then reassembled.  We came home Thursday, one day sooner than I had been in the hospital with Sadie.  I was excited to be home with my family, and I was sick of the uncomfortable bed and chairs in the hospital. 
 

After we got home I had so much help from my family, and it was so wonderful having so much support.  My recovery after the first few days became much more painful and difficult to manage than my c section was.  I was really discouraged and frustrated with myself, I wanted to VBAC so I could have an easier recovery than after Sadie, but that was very much not the case.  Seriously though, my mom and mother in law were complete angels and such a huge help for my little family and I am so grateful for all they helped me do.  I’m almost two weeks postpartum, and while I’m still hurting, I am off narcotics, and I can mostly get around okay.  I just have to take things a lot slower than I am used to, but I am happy I am recovering.
  

At a postpartum check-up one week later I was getting my stitches re checked (I popped a few over the weekend, yeah; it was as painful and horrible as it sounds).  My doctor said that with the next baby, while it is my choice, he strongly discouraged me doing a vaginal delivery ever again, because my chance of blowing out the same area was very high (yikes, no, thank you).  Sooooo….we will be doing c sections from now on.  I’m kind of glad I had the opportunity to at least try a vaginal birth, but overall, wow, it has been much more difficult to recover from than the c section.  I am kind of relieved to just know what is in my future.  It’s no question…I will just have c sections, and I can prepare myself better for them.

Landon has been a dream baby.  He hardly ever cries, and he loves to snuggle.  Sadie is pretty hands on and isn’t as gentle as I’d like her to be all the time, but he doesn’t seem to mind too much.  Sadie loves to be a big sister helper with her brother, and she is so sweet and loving towards him.  She loves to talk to him, hold him, hug him, and kiss him.  She loves to get things for him, throw away his diapers, and help pick out his clothes.  So with that, I am so happy.  She has started to ignore pretty much anything else we say to her though, which is driving me crazy.  We have really tried to help give her a lot of attention away from baby, and we both try to really make a huge effort to tell her we love her and think she’s so special, on her own and as a big sister.  But, she still is being stubborn about certain things and just flat out ignores us a lot of the time.  She is also very emotional about things she wasn’t before.  Again, just trying to be extra patient with her, I know her entire world has basically been flipped on its head and we’re all just trying to adjust.  I’m hoping this is all just normal and we’ll figure it out eventually.  However, not once has she ever said anything negative towards her brother or asked to give him back (at least, not yet), and she seems to really like having him around. 

 Adjusting to two kids has been an adventure, but I am so happy they are here.  I feel like they are both my miracle babies who fought to get here, and I am so grateful to have been blessed to be their mommy.  I love them so much my heart could just burst.  Even through all the heart ache and pain, emotional and physical, one thing is for certain:  our Mr. Landon Chase was well worth the wait.


Thursday, November 7, 2013

Sadie Smarty Pants

As her mother, I have this biased towards my child.  I always think she is the smartest, most beautiful, sweetest, most awesome living thing in the whole universe.  Well, the other day, Sadie was in the tub and just started counting.  She got to four, and I was happy, she got to seven and I was surprised, and when she got to ten all by herself, I was seriously floored.  I did not teach her that.  Honestly, I think playing hide and go seek with her cousins is what did it.  I pulled out my camera to film her, and by then she was a little distracted and needed a bit of prompting, but I was seriously so shocked with how high she got at the end without any help

video
Smarty pants girl.  Gosh, I love her, and I love being her mommy.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

To my sweet TWO year old little girl...

Miss Sadie Sue,

Looking through my past letters, it is crazy to realize how much you really have grown in only a year.  You are quite literally my most favorite girl on this entire planet.  I thank Heavenly Father every single day that I am the lucky one who is blessed enough to be your mother.

This past June we moved into Grandma and Grandpa's house.  Daddy is in pharmacy school now, and we decided that it would be best for our family to be able to save money on rent, as well as be closer to our family and Daddy's new school.  We love living here, and you especially love having "Mrama and Papa" right upstairs.  You ask several times a week to be able to go upstairs and say goodnight to them.  You love playing in the backyard, especially in the play house and play truck that Grandpa and you daddy built a long time ago.  You adore Grandma's doggies, Tuxedo and Rio.  You love following them around, giving them loves, and laying on them like they are pillows.  You are pretty sweet to them, and you are good at remembering to be soft with them.  Most of all, though, you love having so much more room to play around the house.

When we moved here, we moved you out of your crib and into a big girl bed.  The first night I was so nervous you would be so anxious about being in a new room, and not being contained in your crib.  I was worried you wouldn't adjust well to your new home.  Well, sweetheart, you proved me wrong!!  That night we got you in your jammies, brushed your teeth, and read you a book.  We sang you a song, and put you in your bed, I tucked you in and told you "Good night, Sweet Girl.  Sleep well, stay in your bed until the sun comes up, okay?"  You said "Okay, Mama." and closed your eyes and went to sleep, and that was that.  We have seriously had zero problems with transitioning you to your bed, and I have been so proud with how you have adjusted to such a big change in your life.

You are a little ball of sunshine in my life.  Every morning after you wake up, I can hear you talking in your big girl bed, and I open the door to tell you good morning.  I love this part of your day, because I come and sit on your bed and ask if I can hold you.  You always say "yeah" and climb into my lap and let me snuggle you for a couple minutes.  I ask you about what you dreamed about the night before, and you usually tell me you were reading books, this morning you told me I came to you and washed your cheeks.  I don't know if these are really your dreams, but I love that you will talk to me in the morning.

You actually talk to me all day long.  You hardly ever stop to take a breath, now that your vocabulary is large enough to communicate most of your wants and needs throughout the day.  I love your sweet little voice, and I wish I could bottle it up.  I love watching you put together sentences and phrases to communicate what you want.  You are pretty soft spoken compared to some of your cousins.  When you get really excited about something, you usually get pretty quiet instead of squeal-y, which I think is pretty funny.  When we ask you what a tiger says, you even "roar" in a whisper instead of getting really loud.  You are usually so wonderful at remembering your manners, and you are so great at saying "please and thank you," which makes me just beam.  You used to use sign language for a lot of words about a year ago, but slowly you have dropped all of the signs, except you still always sign please when you say it.  I also love how you say thank you like "tang-too."

You love love love bunnies right now.  You have two pink bunnies that play music and you always want them to play while you're falling asleep.  You love watching a show on netflix called "Miffy" as well, which is about a little bunny.

You love Minnie Mouse.  This makes me SO HAPPY.  You have several Minnie dolls that you play with, and you always want bows in your hair, like "Mi-ee Mouse."

You love to say prayers and read your Book of Mormon.  Every night, Daddy sits you on his lap and you guys read and pantomime one verse to me.  Daddy is so silly about it, but you love doing this with him, and I love hearing you try to say big words like "commandments."

You got a play kitchen for your birthday a couple days ago, and you have been glued to it.  You love to play with it constantly, and you are always cooking me "snacks" throughout the day.  Grandma Ilene gave you a Minnie Mouse mini table and chairs, and you love eating at your table for every meal.

You are starting to go on the potty about once a day now.  There have been a couple of days you go more often, but usually it's only in the morning before I put you in the bath.  We give you a sticker after every time, and you love that.  I think in a couple months we'll see if you're ready to be completely potty trained.  I wasn't planning on potty training you until next summer, but you might be ready sooner than that.

You know almost all of your colors now, and you love to tell us what color everything is ("Mom, byoo pwate!  Lellow tup!").  You also sing your alphabet a lot, but I don't know if you really know what "letters" are. Except today when I was putting you down for your nap, I was wearing a necklace that said "Paris" and you grabbed it and said "Mom!  A-B-C-D necklace!" so maybe you're catching on more than I realize.

You love being girly, you love pink, purple, princess ANYTHING, sparkles, bows, dresses, skirts, and having your hair done.  You love it when I paint your nails, and after we do mani-pedis at home, you tell EVERYONE all about it, Daddy, Grandma, the cashier at the grocery store, I mean everyone.  You love shoes and have taught yourself how to put your own flip flops on this summer.  Sometimes they are on the wrong feet, and sometimes you get the little thing in between the wrong toe, but you are always so proud of you doing it yourself.

You are the sweetest girl, Sadie Sue.  You are charming, friendly, and happy.  You love playing with your cousins, and we love watching you interact with them.  You are seriously the most incredible little human I have ever met, and I am so glad you get to be my sidekick every day.  This past year has been a hard one for us, but through this time I have come to an even greater realization of how much of a miracle baby you are to our family.  Daddy and I love you more than words could ever express, and we are more grateful that you were able to make it into our family despite all odds.  Thank you a million times for fighting your way into our family.  We are so grateful you are here and we can't imagine our family without you in it.

Happy birthday, sweet little girl, I love you more fiercely than I could have ever imagined I could love anyone.  Thank you for being my baby girl.

Love,
Mommy

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

To My Sweet 11 Month Old Baby Girl

Wiggle-Wart,

You are a curious, squirmy, wiggly, little girl who never has one second to hold still, unless you are sleeping.  We took pictures with the SAAS cousins (Sadie, Avery, Adalyn, and Sonja) all in matching outfits, and were such a little trouble maker.  Because you are the oldest cousin, you are the first to become the most mobile, and while we were taking pictures, you were only interested in crawling away, or worse, crawling on top of your smaller, helpless cousins.  Luckily, we still were able to get a few good shots, and we were all able to laugh about it at the end of the day.

You are a happy little girl and love to jabber and giggle all the time. Your favorite jibber jabbery things to say are "diddle deedle dee" and "da da lum."  I'm not sure why those are your favorite noises, but they are so silly to listen to and you keep all of us giggling.  You also love to say "mom mom mom" over and over again. I don't think you really know that the word "mom" means me, but you seem to get that it means "help me" or "pay attention to me" or something like that.

You get very, very giggly when you are tired, and you will giggle at the funniest, smallest things. One night during dinner you hadn't gotten any good, long naps, but later that night while we were eating, I would look up from my plate while I was eating my dinner and just look at you, and you thought that us making eye contact was pretty dang hilarious.  You love being tickled, and it is so fun for us to play tickle games with you.

The other day we were playing with your toys in your room.  I picked up a stuffed animal and cuddled it like it was a baby.  I was trying to show you how to snuggle and love on it, and you got very jealous!  You started shrieking and crawled into my lap, and threw the stuffed animal away from me.  I hope you handle things better when we decided to have another baby and I'm holding a newborn all the time.

We got to visit Flaming Gorge this month and you got to see Great Grandma and Great Grandpa for the second time.  They loved you, and were so amazed by how much you had changed since you were only 4 months old the last time they had seen you.  You are almost walking, and you would cruise along all of their furniture, which they thought was amazing.  Great Grandma is an amazing mother, and I tried to get as much advice from her while we were there as I could.  She told me to love you and to be polite towards you.  She told me that you are the most important thing that will ever be in my life, and to always be kind towards you, even if I feel myself trying to lose my patience.  I will try to do my best at this, sweetheart.

I love you so much, baby girl.  I have loved having you in our family, and I can't believe it's almost been a full year since you joined our family.  You are the best first child I think I could ever have, and I am so glad I get to spend all day every day with you.

Love,
Mommy

To My Sweet 10 Month Old Baby Girl

Bug-Bug,

You turned 10 months old on the 4th of July, and we had a blast celebrating!  We started off the day at a hot air balloon festival with Daddy's side of the family, which you thought was very fascinating.  We then headed up to spend the day with my side of the family and watched a parade, went swimming, and had a BBQ.  At the end of the day, we watched fireworks, and even though you were so tired, you stayed awake, and you loved watching the sparkly sky.

This month you took swimming lessons with me, Aunt Autumn, and your cousin Avery.  You love swimming so much, and if I would let you, I'm sure you would stay in the water all day every day.  I was worried you would be nervous about being in the water, but you were always so happy and loved kicking your legs and splashing in the water.  We even practiced dunking you under the water, and while it wasn't your favorite, you didn't even cry.  We spent a lot of time this month at a water park, and you loved crawling around in the wave pool.  You were sometimes a little too brave, and would crawl in too deep, so we'd have to really stay close by and watch you, but you always loved being in the water.

You are a very fast crawler and love to get into everything.  If I take my eyes off of you for only a couple of minutes, sure enough, you will try to tip over containers, empty baskets, and make all sorts of messes.  Even with all chasing after you I have to do, you are still so sweet and happy that I can't help but just laugh.

This month the last of the four baby girl cousins we got in our family was born.  Sonja was born a couple of weeks early, on Aunt Alicia's birthday.  You actually got your first cold the day before she was born, so you didn't get to meet her until about a week later.  I can't wait to watch you four girls as you grow up, I'm sure you girls will be great friends and have a lot of fun together.

You also decided this month that you were too grown up for baby food.  You had only been eating pureed foods regularly for about two months, but once you had six teeth, you were much more interested in eating whatever your daddy and I were eating instead of the mush we had been giving you.  You love feeding yourself little pieces of food, and your favorites right now are green peas, zucchini, tomatoes, and cheerios   You are such a good eater, which makes me so happy!

You are a hoot, little girl.  I love you to the moon and back, and I am so glad that you are my sweet little girl.

Love,
Mommy

Monday, September 3, 2012

To My Sweet 9 Month Old Baby Girl

Sweet Pea,

This month marks the month that you have now spent the same amount of time in the real world as you did growing inside of me!  Crazy thought!

This month you consistently will clap for yourself or other people, give high fives to those around you, and do other silly things to get a reaction from people.  You love to make people laugh and you adore any kind of attention you can get.

You crawl crazy fast now, and everything has to go right in your mouth while you are exploring the world.  One night Daddy was playing tennis with his friend, Wyatt, and you snuck a leaf in your mouth without my seeing.  I didn't know it was even in there until you started coughing and gagging on it, and I was able to get it out of your mouth.  It was kind of scary for me, and I've had to watch you a lot more carefully now to make sure you are kept safe.

Your hair is finally long enough for me to put two piggies on the top of your head.  You definitely look like your nickname now--Bug.  They are so cute, I melt a little every time I see you with them.

You cut FOUR teeth this month, bringing your grand total up to six little teeth in that cute mouth of yours.  You, my little bug, were a monster while you cut all of those teeth, and you did not want to take naps.  When I would lay you in your crib, you would just stand up to the side and cry and scream and not nap at all.  You were also running a fever and had a runny nose and were so sad with all those teeth coming through, so I spent a lot of time snuggling you and trying to help you feel better.

Your daddy and I celebrated our third anniversary this month, and we decided to take a family day-cation up to the zoo. You really enjoyed yourself and loved having so many different things to look at.

We celebrated our first Strawberry Days with you this year as well.  That week we were also babysitting my cousin's three little boys, and they got to celebrate with us.  We went to the carnival, the parade, Huck Finn Days, and entered you in the baby contest.  It was a fun week, and you loved having those boys to play with too.  You actually love all little kids in general, and love being around them and trying to copy them. Are you sure you were supposed to be an oldest child?

Other favorites this month were going to Seven Peaks a lot--your favorite is the wave pool, and visiting Thanksgiving Point Gardens--you still love going for walks and being outside, and you love playing with your cousins.  You are growing up so fast!

Sadiebug, you are precious.  You are sweet, you are kind, you are so important, and I love you so much.
Thank you for being my very own,
Love,
Mommy