Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Surgery Update, NICU Reunion and Shampoo

It's been awhile since I've felt like sitting down to blog. I guess I've been in a bit of a funk lately...and feeling a little old since my niece just turned 30! YIKES!

Tate's surgery went very well. Dr. Trese tried to make a few cuts to Tate's pupil in hopes that it would just spring open but that didn't work. He had to cut away part of his iris to make his pupil size be 4mm which is good. He removed the rest of his lens capsule and did a bit of laser to remove old scar tissue. He also put an air bubble in Tate's eye because his retina is slightly folded and this should help flatten it out. We had to keep Tate on his belly for 2 days and that was quite the task. We are going back to Detroit on 10/14 for a check up (we usually follow up with his doctor here but Dr. Trese wants to see him first) and hopefully that will be our last visit to the Motor City. For all of you who are wondering ~ Yes we finally went to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Sad to report it was a bit underwhelming. The highlight was listening to "Roundabout" by YES on a video monitor since it's in the top 500 songs that changed rock and roll. I'm a HUGE Yes fan for those of you who don't already know that!

We went to the first NICU reunion last Sunday. It was quite surreal seeing all my friends that I made (my pump room buddies) while the twins were there and their children. I was so happy to see our 2 favorite doctors and they were equally as happy to see Reese and Tate. It was a little disappointing that we only saw a few of the nurses who cared for them. We were hoping to see our favorites but none of them were there. The nurse who let me touch Tate for the first time when he was just 1 day old was there and she came right up and hugged me..that surprised me a bit but she was really sweet. I think we'll go back next year for sure. I hate to say this but I was quite surprised that out of all the kids who were in the NICU at the same time as my kids, none of them had any health issues. Please don't get me wrong..I'm very relieved that they are all healthy with no problems. It's just made me feel a little worse about my kids vision issues... and selfishly so. Please don't say "It could've been worse" because I already know how their whole ordeal could've turned out...I just wish that they too had no problems at all.

Okay, last subject is Shampoo. I will tell you that I always have been and always will be a shampoo snob. Even in my broke and single days I would buy expensive hair products and live on rice and cereal. I'm in a shampoo rut. I always have at least 3 different shampoos and alternate their use (just to keep my hair surprised) but I've been using the same ones for years and I'm getting very bored with them. I'm asking for your help and opinions..which shampoos do you use and why? There really is a huge difference between salon poos and drugstore brands. My hair will attest that this is true. Anyway, please let me know if you have any good shampoos I should try. Thanks for your help!!

Monday, September 29, 2008

Happy Birthday Happy Mommy - She's 30!

I'm guest blogging on Happy Mommy's site today in honor of her 30th Birthday!!
Check it out!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Wordless Wednesday ~ Week in Review

Friday, September 19, 2008

19 on the 19th

Just realizing that my twins are 19 months old today and that today is the 19th! It's their Golden Month Birthday!! Did I just make that up? They are taking a nap so I'm catching up reading blogs when I should be packing! We're leaving tomorrow late afternoon to head on over to Detroit by way of Cleveland (RRHF here I come). Tate's surgery is early Monday morning and I'm asking again for all my blogger friends and family to pray for my sweet little guy.

Will keep you all posted after his surgery. Thanks for praying!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Sincerely Fro Me to You ~ Milo Age 10 Weeks

My IVF transfer was on 9/11/06. About a week later (this time that same year), Happy Mommy tells me of a French Bulldog puppy for sale in her neck of the woods. Twice Blessed Daddy and I had talked much about getting a Frenchie puppy for about 2 years but were on the fence about it. I asked TBD what did he think? He wasn't exactly for or against it but since we were still waiting to see if I was pregnant or not...we decided to wait. Well...I waited about 2 hours and then made the call and found out that the puppy had just been sold. Not to be I thought. So after a few hours of being bummed, I decided to look on Pet Finder for Frenchie Puppies and this is what I found:

I almost flipped!!! He was the cutest Frenchie puppy I'd ever seen! His name was Langdon. I called the breeder and yes he was still available. I told TBD to look at his sweet little face and that was it. We put down a deposit and bought ourselves a Frenchie. We arranged to pick him up on Friday 9/21 in Pennsylvania.

On Thursday 9/20, we got the call that my test was positive! And my hcg levels were triple what they should've been so we had a feeling right from the start that we were having twins.

On Friday morning, we drove to PA to get Langdon and we promptly changed his name to MILO. This is his picture on the day we brought him the way, the breeder informed us that this litter was done through IVF so we knew right then, it was meant to be...I was having an IVF baby...he was an IVF baby...funny huh?:

Here are a few more pictures after he was in our home and settling in;

So here's to Milo who's our crazy clown dog and such a special part of our family. We're so happy you've been a part of our lives for the past two years!

For more "Fro me to you" action, head on over to Kristen's site at "we are THAT family" and have yourself a look.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Long Day ~ 1st Emergency Room Visit ~ Reese

Today was very hectic.  While we were waiting for Tate's OT to come for a visit this morning, the kids broke free from their playroom as I was in the restroom.  I see them both go by as I had the bathroom door open.  Next, I hear bells ringing letting me know that they were at the front door (Milo's I need to go potty so I ring the bells).  Then a loud crash, glass shatter and Reese screaming/crying.  I come running around the corner to see Tate at the front door and he's holding a huge chunk of glass out to me.  Reese is sitting next to a wrought iron vase holder that she has managed to pull over.  It holds a glass vase with glass rocks and flowers. She is covered in blood and holding a large chunk of glass in her right hand.  I grab the glass out of her hand and notice that her middle finger is badly cut.  I scoop her up and run to the bathroom leaving a blood trail behind.  I rinse it off , grab a towel and apply pressure.  Call TBD at work and he doesn't pick up. Call the pediatrician and find out they don't do stitches (should I have known this?).  Call TBD again who doesn't pick up.  Call Emi (Tate's OT) and cancel.  Call Happy Mommy who walks me through what I should do.  All while Milo is walking around the glass and Tate keeps going back to the front door.  I'm freaking at this point and TBD still doesn't answer his phone!  Milo in the crate, Tate in his car seat and Reese's hand taped up and in her car seat, we're on our way to the ER.  I finally remember TBD's emergency number while talking to HM.  Happy Mommy gets him pulled out of a meeting and tells him what's happened. He finally calls me as I'm driving to the nearest ER.  Then I call my sister in law forgetting that she's with her mom at the doctor.  Her husband, my BIL calls and tells me to make sure that the ER has a plastic surgeon on call.  He makes some calls for me and it's decided to take Reese to the ER hospital where she was born quite a few more miles away...they have a pediatric ER.  I meet TBD along the way, he parks his car and drives us to the ER.  Reese has quit bleeding awhile earlier and I'm a little less frantic at this point.  We make it to the hospital, TBD drops us off, takes Tate to our BIL's and comes back to see us.  In the meantime, Reese is seen straight away.  They decide to clean her hand, give her a shot in her hand that will block the nerves and stitch her right up.  She's strapped down in a papoose and I'm holding her left hand and stroking her head while she's screaming at the top of her lungs.  Her knuckle was cut pretty deep but no tendon or muscle damage.  She got two stitches, a splint and bandaged up.  She looks like she flipping everyone the bird which I'm sure she is.  TBD gets back just in time for it to be all over and we are discharged.  We go back home and give our sweet girl some Motrin.   My SIL and MIL were at our house cleaning up all the glass and blood when we arrived...thanks for that!   I take Reese up to our room and we climb in bed and take a nap together.  Tate enjoyed the day with his uncle Jeff and cousin/aunt Jessica who were apartment hunting for Jessica.  I know this post is very disorganized but please excuse's been a rough day!!

Sincerely Fro Me to You ~ Tate and Reese Day 5 Transfer

Twice Blessed Daddy and I both waited until we were a bit older in life to get married. On January 15, 2005, we tied the knot...I was 40 and TBD was 44 (it was also TBD's parents 50th wedding anniversary). We decided to try and start a family right away. We had trouble conceiving on our own, so we did what many people do and turned to a fertility clinic. I will tell you that one of the worst things a woman can hear in her life is that she has "old eggs". After one failed attempt at IVF (10/05), we waited almost a year before we tried again. I was the one who wanted to wait. I was in such a funk after the first round failed and was very depressed for several months. It hit me a lot harder than I had expected.

In the summer of 2006, I started working out much harder than usual. I went from running 2-3 miles a day to 3-5 miles a day (5 days a week), I walked 2 miles almost every morning with Mrs. G before we would head over to Curves. I also walked with TBD some evenings. I decided that I was going to be in the best shape I could be in if/when I ever became pregnant. Later that summer, our church had a series called "Deep Water Faith". On the kickoff Sunday of the series, they placed a blank sheet of paper in the bulletin. After the service, they asked everyone to write down a subject that needed to have complete faith about. You could sign it or remain anonymous. We were told that all notes would be read and that the staff would pray for each and every request. I wrote almost word for word, "TBD and I are trying to decide if we should try IVF again or go straight to adoption. We want to have faith that the one we choose is the right decision". I placed my signed piece of paper in the oak box.

Two days later, I woke up from a dream and knew right then and there that we were supposed to try IVF one more time. I turned to TBD and told him that I just had a dream about us and IVF and felt absolute peace that this was the right decision. He agreed to proceed but requested that we change clinics. Not a problem. I also told him that I wanted to go to an acupuncturist who specializes with IVF patients. We made our appointments later that week and we were all set.

We went on vacation to London and Paris and on our way home 8/11/06, I started my first injection of Lupron while on board the airplane. It was kind of cool, sitting in our seats and TBD giving me a shot in my belly. I had a great month without too much pain and my retrieval date was 9/6/06. They were able to get 10 eggs from me..this was great news since the first time I only had 5. We waited for the progress report daily and it was decided to transfer on 9/11/06, day 5 which is amazing (for those of you who don't know much about IVF, a day 5 transfer is the best you could hope for)!

So two years ago today, on 9/11/06, I finally had something wonderful happen to me. After living and working in NYC during 9/11, it was about time that something special happened on that date. Here is a picture of Tate and Reese taken right before they were implanted in my belly. This day turned out to be one of the best days of our life! (I covered my real name.)

I'm so happy that our church had that series. We prayed in earnest to have the faith we needed to make our family complete....and it worked!

For more "fro me to you" action, go to Kristen's site at "we are THAT family" and check it out. It's the best thing in the blogging world happening on Thursdays.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Update on Tate

Tate's surgery went as well as could be expected. He did have a cataract which had to be removed, meaning they removed his ocular lens. They were able to open his pupil which was the main goal of his procedure. They did have to make one serious decision and we're glad that opted to stop where they did. I should mention that Dr. Trese (doctor in Detroit) was aware of Tate's surgery and acted as a consultant. After removing his cataract and all the lens cavity, they wanted to make a small hole in the back of his lens chamber. After noticing that Tate still has some residual ROP scaring, they realized if they did make this hole, it would pull on his retina. This is where Dr. Trese will come in. We will be making hopefully a final trip to Detroit so he can do this delicate procedure on Tate. So all in all, this is a good thing. Tate will probably have to wear glasses or a single contact on his right eye but that is so minor.

Tate's primary doctor who lead the surgery told us that Tate's cataract was so opaque, that he didn't really think that there had been any useful vision in his right eye. What?? Here we've been so worried about this procedure since all this time we've thought it was his "good eye". After Tate's right eye was patched yesterday, we were not sure how much he could see out of his left eye which has a severely dragged macula. I tell you people, I'm so happy to report that Tate was not the least bit affected by his right eye being patched (except that he kept trying to remove it all day). He played and acted like his usual now we realize that even though his macula is dragged, he still has had very useful vision out of his left eye....who knew?

I'm looking forward to know how he sees after I take him to the doctor this morning to have the patch removed. Since his pupil is now open, he should be able to see much better. And we do know he was nearsighted in that eye and removing the lens should correct that. The reason he'll need glasses or a contact is to replace the lens and help him focus.

Thanks to everyone for your prayers. It has really meant a lot to me and our family. I'll keep everyone posted on when we make our trek back to Detroit. Maybe there's still hope for me and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame!!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Sincerely Fro Me to You ~ First Time I Held Tate

This picture was taken on March 7, 2007 and it was the first time I held my son. His nurse Connie let me hold him and I was so happy that I could hardly contain myself. My parents were there with me but TBD was on his way to the hospital from work and he missed it. I was so happy that Connie took this picture and gave it to me right then and there. She was one of my favorite nurses of Tate's. I'm doing this "Fro me to you" on Tate because I found out yesterday that he is going to have his long awaited eye surgery next Monday 9/8 (my sister's birthday- Happy Mommy's mom). This is a very complicated surgery and they are expecting complications but 2 of his doctors will be there to handle any situations that may occur (ocularplastic surgeon for the iris and retinal surgeon for the retina). Please pray for my little boy, that the Lord has mercy on Tate and that there is NO cataract, hence saving his ocular lens.

This next picture was taken last Saturday when we all went to Kings Dominion for my nephew's birthday celebration. Tate loved the merry go round and I loved taking him on it...that's not completely true! I had just rode a roller coaster with Luke and my brain was a bit rattled and I felt very nauseous and going round and round didn't help!

Anyway, please be so kind and keep Tate in your prayers.

For more "Fro me to you" fun, check out Kristen's blog at "we are THAT family".

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Wordless Wednesday