Monday, June 30, 2008

Good-bye June...

Can't believe its July 1st today...a whole month in the hospital. Craziness.

Nothing new to report, just taking one day at a time. Its working. Of course, I have my moments...but today (0r at the moment) I am feeling optimistic, so I'll take it.

Today we had a little get together with some of the other women on the floor. This is the 2nd thing I have attended. There was only 1 other girl from before and she also has PROM (premature rupture of the membranes). Although, she can't be much older than me and she already has 5 kids and her doctors are optimistic on this baby too. Soooooo, as you can imagine, sometimes I would rather just stay in my room and joke with the nurses instead.
Tomorrow Soph is going to spend the night with Tim before the big weekend, that should be interesting:) Otherwise, things are somewhat boring, but I am finding things to occupy my time...mostly I paint my picture, sleep, and joke with the nurses. I just focus on when I get out of here and how wonderful it will be to feel like I am being productive again.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

New Room...

Biggest news for the day...I got moved to a corner room. Pretty excited actually, it has a bunch more windows and more room. The change of scenery is nice too. So if you plan on visiting, give a ring first or stop by the nurses station so you don't walk into the wrong room!! I just don't want to post the number on this blog for the world to see.

Other than that, it was a good day. Had one of my favorite nurses. Tim brought lunch and Sophie. We all went on a nice, long walk, and then I had a surprise visit from a great, old friend. Couldn't ask for much more...other than to go home.

Did a little research and also talked with the doctor today regarding Will. Things still don't look that promising and I am really trying to keep the faith. I guess for the first time in my life, this one thing that I don't want to face. It is one thing that Tim and I find difficult to talk about. Too many "what ifs" and both of us just don't know what to expect at all. For everything that we have been through, we're totally clueless right now. Sometimes this just seems too hard and too scary. This is one of those days. I think my biggest challenge today is all my useless wishing that things could be...should be...so different right now. And to think that I wanted to have like 4 kids! It is going to take a lot of time and courage for us to face this road again, even if Will does make it through okay...it just hasn't been what we always dreamed of, and of its been totally unlike all of our friends' stories.

I need to get over the fact that this isn't just going to go away and I do need to deal with it.
I just wish I knew what I was going to be dealing with.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Another day in paradise...

Last night Tim and I had date night. Nothing like a little take out from T.G.I Friday's and a movie from Netflix to take me away from this place for a few hours. We decided that this will be our Friday night routine, a reward of sorts...only a few more to go.

I am just grateful to eat anything other than the nasty hospital food, which nearly makes me dry heave every time I look at it. Last night's dinner tray was no exception. They messed up my carbs again and then some of it I couldn't even eat, but I had to try because they test my blood sugar after every meal. I started to feel pretty crappy (Kelly this is when you happened to call and no wonder I felt the way I did!) and they tested my blood at it was at 56! Yikes...it is normally between 110 and 140. So on a bright note I got to drink some oj and eat some of my chex mix I was eyeing the past two days.

My family stopped by this afternoon and we took a walk around Heritage Hill (for all of those not familiar with GR, its the blocks around the hospital with tons of old homes built around the early 1900's that are amazing). They pushed me in the wheelchair and we enjoyed the great weather. It was hard to go back inside...

Still waiting to see if I get moved to a nice corner room. I'm praying that it happens tomorrow, I just need a change of scenery. Since I've been here its gone from spring to summer, it is so surreal. I think I'm just getting extremely homesick, I especially miss looking out into our back yard to see the deer in the woods. I pray every night that things go okay and July will be a great month for numerous reasons.

Friday, June 27, 2008

29 Weeks...

I'm laying in bed with my shirt pulled up, watching my belly move.
Will has the hiccups.
I hate it when Tim isn't around to see this kind of stuff...The baby only seems to do act up when its just the two of us and no one else to witness such an event...

Today marks the beginning of Week 29...officially the 3rd trimester. My doctor made rounds this morning and they have tentatively set my c-section date for Wednesday, July 23rd @ noon. With my luck, now that they have set a date, something will probably happen before then. Nothing ever happens according to plan! At least not with this baby.

I have mixed feelings about this. Both excitement and fear wrapped into one. It will be a relief to know that I can go home soon, but once Will is born a whole new experience is going to take place. Besides, I'm also nervous about the surgery because I have never been operated on or anything before...no broken bones, no stitches...so this is kind of a big deal to me.
We are all in limbo here, we want to be excited, yet are scared to death to have a very sick baby that might potentially not make it. All we can do right now is deal with it, because it simply is what it is...and it isn't up to anyone here on earth to decide the outcome, so all we can do is continually pray and hope for the best.

We are continually grateful for everyone's thoughts and prayers as we all await anxiously for this baby that has a complete miracle so far...I'm a firm believer in the power of prayer and know that there are so many people cheering him on, and this means so much.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Day 29

All I can think about today is what I am going to eat once I am no longer diabetic. I was just checking out some of my friends' blogs, including one that features awesome cupcakes from a friend I taught with in CA...Kelly's blog: Once Upon a Cupcake and the cupcakes she has made (or rather looking at the pictures) is enough to make me want to pull out my hair...they look so good. Yes, I like to torture myself by looking at pictures of things I cannot eat!

Nothing is worse than being hungry when you are pregnant, especially when craving all sorts of food that I cannot have, whether its fresh fruit or chocolate. Today I am starving and its making me go crazy. And just now I realized that I have a huge bag of chex mix stashed beside my bed that I had given to me before all the tests were done...I'm thinking that my self control might be waning today. I gave in last week and started to bite into a nutty bar, only to get a knock on my door...I jumped out of my skin and tossed the half eaten dessert into the drawer beside my bed out of sheer panic and guilt. How pathetic.

Okay, I need distractions. Ha, those are running few and far between. Yesterday was so boring and the weather was bad, so I never made it outside. Today the weather is nasty again, but I don't care if I get wheeled around the hospital~I HAVE to get out of this room. My latest time-wasting habit has been visiting all of the websites of my favorite stores (which are all having big sales right now), filling up my shopping cart, and the closing the window. Its nice to pretend that I will actually have a life again where I can wear something other than pajamas and live in a real house!

An answer to my prayers: a distraction. My favorite doctor just left my room and we discussed scheduling a c-section. So, about 2 weeks from tomorrow, they will pick a day for the following week. We're getting closer! I want this time to come so badly, yet it scare me to death. I just don't want the next phase to be a whole new ordeal...I just can't pray any harder. This may sound terrible, but I either hope its all or nothing. "All" meaning that Will needs some monitoring but is going to be healthy overall...or "nothing" meaning that if he is sick or severely disabled that God takes him home quickly with as little suffering as possible...

Of course, I want it all...

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

4 Whole Weeks!!!

The last 24 hours have been less than normal. Nothing that big of a deal, but lots of time on the monitor and the nurses are scolding me for "acting up." The last four weeks have been uneventful...but I did tell the doctor that if something happened in the next week I would not be shocked at all. Still, my goal is to at least make it to the 4th of July because that will put me at 30 weeks.

The minor happenings started yesterday with him kicking my cervix so hard it made me start bleeding again, once that began they put me on the monitor and I had a few mild contractions. The reason they are so puckered is that because my water has already broken, labor can come very quickly and then go super fast with little warning. So I am very closely monitored. While on the monitor, his heart rate dropped twice for a few seconds. This they believe is his cord being compressed, which is another result of not floating in amniotic fluid. They watch this closely also.
Then last night we were getting ready for bed and I had another surprise waiting for me. The baby went to the bathroom and it to put it nicely, it wasn't #1...so all the nurses came in, the resident was called, and back on the monitor I went. After all that, nothing was done, just another rush of excitement for the staff and me wanting to just go to bed.

So, today is better. I had some extended time on the monitor but things are still going okay. Hopefully, we'll know in about 3 weeks about Will and his health status. I am just so eager after all this time to see what is going to happen. I'm still at peace with things and just continue to pray each day that he miraculously makes it through. Please continue your prayers also, we greatly appreciate them and all of the support. At times it can be very difficult to remain patient and trusting, we play the wondering game of "Are we going to take home a baby or not??" And I want to prepare, yet feel that until he comes, it isn't right to do anything until we know. I want to get excited, yet I'm guarded because if he doesn't make it, that will be so devastating.

The nurse and I were talking today and we did decide on something. One thing I do know is that I am going to celebrate getting out of this place. So we are going to have the biggest bash and the heading of the invitation is going to look something like this:

We're Celebrating! Please join us for a Housewarming/We finally made it to Michigan/Julie's out of the hospital/It's finally summer!/I can finally drink again:)/We just had a baby...Party. Uh, did we forget anything?

Monday, June 23, 2008

Slacker...

Its been a few days and I realize that I haven't posted a new update and people are emailing to check in and make sure I'm alright. I'm fine. Its just that the days go so slowly and so fast at the same time. I've also had a run of new nurses, most of which have been forgetting my medicine and other things, so yesterday I never got my diabetic pill before dinner and my sugar level spiked giving me a wicked headache...so I never got around to turning on my computer. I know...what a lame excuse!

This weekend went fast having Tim back home. Very grateful for that, and then yesterday I started to type and the day just got away from me. First, I had a very special visit from a former student and his mom, Deb and Grant (all the way from Orange County) who happened to be visiting family on the east side of the state and decided they wanted to come and visit me too! It was awesome to see them and catch up with one of my 5th grade students on how the rest of the year went after my move. Thanks so much again for making the trip over here and for the gorgeous O.C. flowers:) The nurses are totally jealous...

Then for the rest of the day I was consumed by my Paint by Numbers picture. Seriously...it was addicting and driving me crazy at the same time. But it did its job~it made the dull moments of my day go super fast. I was looking at the package and it states for 8+ years...yeah, right. This thing made me feel like an idiot, with all the small little spaces and the mixing of the paint I have to do. I felt like I could hardly do it, and I am way older than an 8 year old...(at least in body, attitude can be questionable!) I'm going to take pictures of my work in progress.

Other than that, nothing much new is going on. They are trying to move me into a bigger, corner room this weekend which will be nice. I don't care much about the space, but it will be a change of scenery and much more quiet. Both of which are great things. Will's still hanging out and Tim is working insane hours (yesterday he left at 6:30 and didn't get back to my room until 9). So at least I have my nurse friends to keep me company.

Just keep the days coming...I can't believe that next Friday is July 4th and that Saturday will be a full month in this stupid place. I just can't wait to go home and sleep in my own bed...Even then I will probably go through withdrawals because random people won't be walking into my room at all hours of the day. What lifelong lesson am I learning? Embrace change~ because that is the only constant in life...the one thing I can count on is that life will never be the same once I return back home.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Furry visitor...

As I sit here and type, I have the Soph hanging out sleeping on my hospital bed...she is a hit with the doctors and nurses who all come into my room clean and then leave looking like a furry monster exploded onto their scrubs. Too funny.

Having Tim and Sophie here today have put things back in the order they needed to be. For the first time in weeks, Tim was here when the doctor came in and explained the ultra sound. For this I am grateful because hearing things from me is not the same. She showed us a graph with the lung development and said that although there are NO guarantees, his lungs look to be growing and things are looking better. More good news...if I continue to carry him without any problems she is going to consult with the other doctors and push to have me deliver at week 32 instead of week 34...YAY!!!!!!!!! Please keep praying that Will continues to develop and he stays put at least another 2 weeks...

The earlier delivery is good for a number of reasons: first, infection and also a complication where the placenta detaches from the uterus wall greatly increases after week 32 in women who ruptured as early as I did. Second, this means I only have 4 more weeks to go, which makes me much more optimistic and able to keep my sanity, which can only help Will. And third, we can finally see just what we are dealing with here.

I love my friend Beth's comment from my last post about God carrying me. It made me laugh, which is always a good thing. To answer her question, as far as I can tell, the last week (okay, more like last 11 weeks) God has definitely been carrying me ~ no doubt about that...but which way I don't know. I guess, if I were picturing how my thoughts about everything would translate into actions, I can totally picture me throwing a hissy fit and being dragged down the beach. God walking, patiently looking ahead unfazed by my frantic pleas and screams, with his footprints being left behind in the sand. And then me, much less elegantly, crying, sniffling, yelling...holding onto God for dear life, looking behind me more than looking ahead. The occasional drag mark from my foot when I just wanted to plant myself and not move forward. I can totally picture it. Am I embarrassed by this? Yes and no...because I'll be the first to admit that I am not perfect by any means and I have many more weak moments than so called strong ones during this experience.

But today I have had an attitude change and that has helped me not to look back over God's shoulder any longer. Now I would say that I am riding on his shoulders, eagerly looking forward at what is to come...hoping to catch a glimpse of the miracle baby that is going to be born sooner than I thought. I know I can't prepare for much, other than to stop wasting time worrying and continue to build up my faith and my trust that things will work out.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Ultra Sound day...

Today started with my ultrasound. I really like the technician who does them here at the hospital, she is super nice and explains a lot to me. This morning I set out with realistic expectations and know that I get emotional when I see Will on the screen. It makes this whole nightmare so much more real.

This ultrasound today was mainly to measure growth. The good news is, Will weighs about 2 lbs. 5 oz. which is right on. His lungs are at the 20th percentile and his heart at the 60th. The doctors don't like looking at these numbers much though because they can be so inaccurate. There is still no fluid and he is still breach. He is looking to my left side with his hands curled up by his face. His little bottom is down by my cervix with one of this little feet stomping right there. That explains the soreness and pressure sort of like cramping...sooooo, not cool! His other leg is up by his head, yes, my child is currently doing the splits. Very strange. Had me concerned he is going to come out all bendy like Gumby himself, but the doctor told me it isn't a big deal.

Even though there isn't any "new" bad news, there wasn't much good either. I'm just looking for some sort of sign. So when the doctor gave me a 3 hour pass to go and leave the hospital today, I should have been happy, right? Nope. I had a major breakdown, thank goodness I was with my mom. I now can relate to when Tim would come home after a deployment and got a glimpse of what he may felt like....

It was nice to get out. Harder to go back. I just want to have a life again. If they were giving me hope for Will, it would be easy to do this. A no brainer. This is what I basically told my mom today, as I laid in the beautiful shady back yard swinging in the hammock...

I know that God doesn't give us more than we can handle, but honestly, I have already had more than I can handle at times. My breakdowns and anger are proof of that, because that isn't me. It isn't who I am...these last 11 weeks have pushed me to the brink. So how can I possibly even begin to imagine what might happen once Will arrives. I don't know where I will find the strength to learn this new life. I know the day I checked in here my life as I knew it wouldn't be the same. And no matter what happens, I do know one fact; I will not give birth to a completely healthy baby and leave the hospital with him a few days later...and I just don't know what to do anymore or how to prepare. Bottom line is, I am already at my limit and can't possibly handle anymore.

I would say the hardest part of this whole experience has been keeping a positive attitude for so many ups and downs and also for such a long time. We all have hard times, this just seems like it is lasting for so long. I try to remember that I am not alone (even though I feel very alone at times) and that I need to have faith and continue hope. Most days I do well with this. Then on certain days I wonder what is so different. Then I remember my favorite poem when I was a teenager called "Footprints" where at the end a man looks back over his trials and questions God because he only sees one set of footprints in the sand. God replies that all through his life he has walked beside this man, but during his most troubling times, when he sees only one set of footprints, that is when God carried him...

I need to feel carried today. Does that make sense? I need to feel the comfort and peace that I have been seeking for so long. God provides it through so many different ways, one of them is through the continued prayers and messages from so many people. All those things, which may seem so insignificant, help to carry me through each and every day I spend in this little room...

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Day 22

Today went fast. Did some of the stuff on my "to do" list...watched my DVD, pretty good flick overall. I never got to my paint by numbers, maybe this weekend. Had an awesome visit from an old friend who also happens to be my parent's neighbor and my friend's mom tonight, it was so nice to see her. Then an evening stroll in the wheelchair with absolute perfect weather. Can't beat that.

Tomorrow is going to be a big day. I have an ultrasound and am praying that it goes well. Will has been moving a lot today and I am curious to see if he has changed his position. My "baby bump" seems to be sitting lower and it just feels different...between him moving and the added pressure of his weight, who knows.
After that, I may be getting a "pass" from my doctor which will let me leave the hospital for a few hours after lunch. They do this for special occasions, mine is to see some family at my parent's house and just get out before I lose my mind...I think they will give me about 3 hours. I am excited and yet nervous to leave at the same time. Its scary to think that I have gotten on such a routine that it seems unnatural to leave. Maybe in the back of my mind it would be easier to just stay, then to leave, have a great time and then realize that I do have to go back.

The best part of tomorrow is that Tim flies back from Jersey. So glad that this is behind us. No more worrying that he won't be around in case something happens, that is a huge stress release. Tomorrow also marks the beginning of Week 28 and that makes 10 weeks since my water broke. Simply amazing that these days just keep going by. Every day is a prayer of thanks and an anticipation of our future.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Day 21

21 Days...Three whole weeks. I can't believe it.

Today was quiet. I met with the doctor and asked him how things have changed, as far as our outlook on Will's chances, over the weeks I have been here. Again, our situation is so unique that he was hestitant and couldn't really say. He said that we should have some hope, however, the lungs and the disease associated with their inability to develop without fluid was still very concerning to him. Fair enough.

Each week that goes by, is good of course, and he said that I am doing every thing possible for this baby by being here. This has been such an emotional roller coaster. I know that there are so many possibilities, and even if I stay here until August 1st that doesn't mean he will live. I guess that is the hardest part. It is a fine line between having faith and being hopeful for the best, but also being realistic at the same time. Nothing is worse than thinking everything will be "fine" and then having a bomb dropped on you. I've been through enough to know that denial never does anyone any good, and it makes you look like an idiot. Our moto has always been "plan for the worse and hope for the best." So far that has worked very well. I mean look at the last 10 weeks...we planned for him not to make it at all, and for me to have a miscarriage back in April. Every day that passes now is such a gift, and the best part is that I never EXPECTED it...

One day at a time. This has me having flashbacks of how I survived deployments. What do I do to pass the time? I make a list each day of things to do and start crossing them off. Its amazing how poor of a job I really do, so its no different than a list at home. But instead of never getting around to dusting or vacuuming, I somehow can't find the motivation to go through a stack of activities I brought with me 3 weeks ago, that I actually really need to do. Which led me to a great discovery...

I don't think people actually run out of "time"...I think we run out of motivation. Because let's face it, if it is something we really want to do...we can always find the time. Earth-shattering, I know...See what happens if you stick a person in a room and there is nothing to do but think? Scary.


Based on my list of to-do's for tomorrow, it will most likely be a great day. I don't want to make anyone jealous...but my activities include doing a "paint by numbers" portrait (thank you, thank you, thank you Susan for the awesome care package...I am so excited for all my "projects") and watching my newest Netflix DVD, "The Other Boleyn Girl." And to think Tim is excited to go to NYC for the day tomorrow...at least I can pretend that I have the better deal:)

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Thankful for friends...


Today was the best day I have had in a long time. I had two good high school friends visit today, Liz & Kristy, and we had a great time catching up. It was like a reunion, as we ran into Brian downstairs when they took me for my daily wheelchair ride (by the way, you did a great job driving Kristy! No direct hits...) They spoiled me with lunch from Panera and an awesome care package...which will keep me entertained for sure.
I am so blessed to have so many great friends. Not just here, but all over this country that are helping me to get through each day. I am also grateful for all the others who read this blog, even though they don't know me, but care enough to keep me and my family in their prayers...
After my visits today, things were back to normal. I got to catch up on some sleep that I have been missing out on, given yesterday's chaos. Then later this evening Brian was gracious enough to come back and take me for a walk (well, he got to walk while he pushed me in the jankiest wheelchair ever) around the historic neighborhood around the hospital. The weather is gorgeous and cool, perfect for being outside. Definitely lifted my spirits.
After my scare yesterday, I got to thinking...I have been focusing so much on Will that I have failed to really prepare myself for any sort of labor or the actual birthing process. Don't people take classes for this stuff?!? How come I'm not??? And if I don't know what I am doing, Tim most certainly doesn't either...
Its too much to think about. So I'll do what I've been doing every day for the last 3 months. I'll pray about it and know that it isn't in my control, but God's...

Sunday, June 15, 2008

False alarm.

Yesterday was tough. I was so frustrated, lonely, and upset that I just couldn't bring myself to write anything worth posting. I went to bed praying for things to get better. Which leads to today and last night's unanswered prayer.

I'll be honest. Today is no better than yesterday. Woke up fine. By 2:00 this afternoon I had already had the following:
1. Cramping (which wasn't a big deal but I mistakenly mentioned it to my doctor and he went a little overboard...okay, a LOT overboard)
2. My personal favorite: a pelvic exam looking for infection. I'm dialated 1 cm, which isn't a big deal. This whole thing was totally unnecessary and gave me extreme anxiety...something I really don't need extra of right now.
3. Lab came in and drew 4 viles of blood for various tests for infection and to prep me for an emergency c-section...that the doctor really didn't mention to me that he was planning for so soon.
4. I was hooked up to the monitor for over 2 hours with nothing to eat or drink while they watched as absolutely nothing happened.

I reached my limit today. When the nurse came in to start an IV that the Dr. requested I refused to let her do it. I couldn't believe what happened just by me mentioning that I was cramping a bit. From now on, I'll be keeping such information to myself unless its really something worth talking about. GOOD GRIEF! Thank goodness for my awesome nurses that are quickly growing into my good friends. They assured me that if this happens again, we'll wait it out for more than a half hour before telling the doctor...sounds like a great plan to me. They all agreed that what happened was not the best course of action to take, they also blamed it on the fact that I have never complained of anything so now when I do open my mouth its like a code red. If it weren't for them right now, I would be totally losing my mind, but they have been so great.

Anways, I am happy to go to sleep tonight and hope that these last two days can be put behind me. I am eagerly awaiting Tim to get home on Friday and then I won't be so hesitant if anything does happen. But Will has got to stay put until then!

The small victory of today? I learned how to poke my own finger for blood sugar tests...sounds insignificant, but it is actually very nice not waiting for something else to click the needle into my finger. Its easier to deal with now, thank goodness...all I've been praying for is that something eases up for us soon, and for today...I'll take this.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Day 17

I should have titled this blog "wheelchairs"...

Today was pretty uneventful, just like the past 16 or so days that have already passed. My daily excitement being my wheelchair ride. The weather today was perfect: not a cloud in the sky, a cool breeze, and just plain beautiful...I was aching to go out there all day.

My mom stopped by with some much needed clean clothes and took me for a ride outside. There is one thing I now know...I really don't like being pushed around in a wheelchair. Love going outside, hate the fact that I have to be pushed out there. Here is why: no matter who does the pushing...Tim, my nurses, my mom...people always run me into things. At first I would laugh, but now I am scarred and nearly jump out of my skin whenever I hit something. I've been run into doorways, walls, the revolving door, the curb, corners, even my bed...its kind of like riding in the car without a seat belt, the chair stops but my body keeps moving. I get jolted and grab my belly trying to shield Will from bouncing all around and making me go into labor...

The wheelchair for me is now a death trap. One of my nurses hit an uneven patch on the sidewalk while we were crossing the street and nearly dumped me into oncoming traffic (that day I laughed and didn't care..telling her to do it right next time and put me out of my misery...Just kidding).

I did get special visitors today that really were the highlight, Chris and Tom stopped by for a surprise visit with their kids. We all worked together in high school, that sadly doesn't seem like that long ago even though its been, gulp, 10 years! It is so great to see people that I haven't seen for a long time. If one good thing has come out of this, I have gotten to cross paths again with many great people from my past...which is an awesome thing. And for that I am grateful.

So here I sit again, on a Saturday night thinking about everything and watching another storm roll in over the city sky line. My thoughts are sometimes on how different it could be right now, especially if I were still teaching my 5th graders. Its the last week of school this coming week at A.V.C.S. and I've been thinking about all my students and how as nutty as it was, I miss that chaos. I miss the daily countdown with the other teachers in the lounge as we were all ready to pull out our hair. I miss the craziness of kids excited for field day and pool parties and the last day of school. Because my life is way, way too quiet right now.

I am trying to heed my mother's advice though...that once Will's little feet make their debut in this world, nothing will ever be the same. And these may be the last quiet days I get for many, many years and that I should try to enjoy them...I can only hope and pray that she is right.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Day 16

What is it with Fridays?

I woke up this morning just feeling funny again. As I laid there, my stomach attached to the monitor listening to Will's heartbeat, I just started thinking...what is to come of it all? Some days, I feel like I am standing in front of a closed door. I can't open it yet, because it isn't time, but I can still wonder what is on the other side.

Will it be something that allows me to be happy again or will it be a monster lurking, like in the horror movies?
Will I look back and think how stupid I was to have so much hope, or realize that I didn't have enough?

Who knows. I don't have a crystal ball. This is one time I really wish that I did. And I wish that things could be different. It is hard to watch life go by my window and not be a part of it. To see cars go by and wonder why I can't be having a wonderful pregnancy like all my friends. I should be enjoying this new Michigan life that we have waited years to have...enjoying my dog, our new house, preparing for Will's new life.

I'll be honest in saying that I really feel cheated right now. Cheated out of so many things other than just a healthy, joyous pregnancy. The weather has been a good indicator of my emotions...overcast with sudden downpours, then sunshine. Very unpredictable and beautiful at the same time. And of course, some days are better than others. This day is just hard...and then I read your notes, prayers, and emails and it gives me that extra shove that I need so desperately in here.

I came across this poem in my devotion today that pretty much sums it up:

Is it raining little flower?
Be glad of the rain;
Too much sun would wither thee;
'Twill shine again.

The clouds are very black, 'tis true;
But just behind them shines the blue.

Art thou weary, tender heart?
Be glad of pain;
In sorrow sweetest virtues grow,
As flowers in rain.
God watches, and thou wilt have sun,
when clouds their perfect work have done.
Lucy Larcom

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Day 15

The last 24 hours have been a whirlwind...in a great way.

My step-sis, Heidi, drove up from Toledo yesterday afternoon to keep me some company while Tim is away. I was grateful for the company and the laughs. She spoiled me with a backrub and pedicure, both of which I am extremely grateful for. Who knew if you laid in bed all day/every day your back would get tons of knots?!? Anyways, she spent the night at the hospital and then volunteered to go shopping for me at the mall and grab me some much needed lounge wear/pajamas. It was great to have her surprise me and pick out some new things. I've been washing and wearing the same things for over 2 weeks and its getting old.

We took some pictures (including one of my count down chain) which I will try to post again. I can't get them to post from my Mac right now. Shocker.

After she left I had some dinner which made my blood sugar spike again. Still trying to get this whole diabetes thing right. Its hard! For those of you who know me, know that I have zero self-control and love food...so this is pretty much torture. Yesterday my doctor came in for his daily visit and got after me because I haven't gained any weight since I've been here. What?!?!

I told him, "That's what happens when you take away a girl's ability to visit the McDonalds drive thru on a daily basis..."

Shoot. What does he expect? I hate the food here and can't eat carbs unless they are counted out for me, and even then it still gets jacked up. I have to admit I was pleasantly surprised and shocked at that news though, because all I do is eat. Seriously.

After dinner I had two more visitors...my mother-in-law and also Brian stopped by. So its been great to have so many people visiting. Takes me mind off all the other stuff. I can't believe tomorrow is Friday and Tim will be back in a week. YAY!

No other real medical news. Baby is growing and moving. He's had the hiccups throughout the week, which is actually very strange to feel, but I love it and cherish each day with him. Tomorrow I get to rip off another ring on the chain....Week 27 officially begins. That marks 10 weeks since all the complications began. At times I still can't believe all that is happening and how far we have already come...

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Day 13

Started today with the good' ol blood sugar test, getting the finger poked first thing in the morning is something I will have to get used to, followed with my stinging shot to my belly. At least I had my favorite nurse this morning and we were laughing because she didn't warn me before sticking me with the needle and I about jumped out of bed...which scared her too.

Did the regular routine: took my medicine, answered the nurses questions, had the baby monitored, ate breakfast, saw the doctor, got my finger poked again (had a high number which wasn't good), the social worker came in to talk and make sure I wasn't going looney tunes...then the highlight of each of my days...taking a shower. I know its pretty exciting stuff, I can hardly contain myself most days:)

Tim and I continued to play phone tag. I think we've talked a whopping 5 minutes total since he left on Sunday. Totally not cool given the situation, but I am dealing with it. Its not his choice, just the crappy situation we're in. My daily prayer is that Will stays put at least until his daddy gets home.

This afternoon the nurses took me for my outdoor wheelchair walk, which is always interesting. We always laugh as they try to push me down the bumpy sidewalks, and somehow we always seem to be going uphill...which gives them a great work out. I hate being pushed around, but they won't let me walk anywhere, I don't complain though, its just so nice to get outside for a few minutes. Today is the first gorgeous day since I have been in here, it was hard to have to go back inside.

It was a very typical day for me, hard to believe that tomorrow is the two week mark...two whole weeks in the hospital. I still can't get over it. With each day I wonder how many more there will be...

Monday, June 9, 2008

Day 12

Today I borrowed a laptop from the hospital to see if my "problems" with the internet could be blamed on my Mac...for some reason I cannot enter my blog, email, or ebay on my personal computer. Go figure. At least I am able to get into everything with their computer, so it should be interesting trying to figure out how to fix that little problem.

I feel so behind in updates because I wasn't able to update everything over the weekend. I have been making due with my diet changes and dealing with getting my fingers poked 4 times a day. I really feel for diabetic people. Chalk that up as one more thing I can relate to now. It actually hurts, so needless to say with that and then my shots, I am getting really sick of people poking and hurting me and I haven't even thought about the C-section yet to come...yikes. Saturday was not a good day at all after they told me, and besides, I had a blood sugar level crash after the test and it completely wiped me out. After Tim left for the night, I completely fell apart.

I had a little discussion with God (I did most of the talking) and I told him how disappointed I was with everything that was going on. That I was mad and I didn't understand what to do or how to handle everything any more. Because let's face it; He's really been dishing it to me lately. Not only am I dealing with the emotional aspect of all the possibilities that lay ahead, I am hurting physically, and we are getting hit financially as well. No one should be laying in a hospital bed, unable to work, and then have to open bills from something that isn't even finished yet. It takes a huge leap of faith to hope that insurance is handling everything and that two months from now I won't open the mailbox and get a bill for $20,000. Those are some of the other things weighing on our minds besides Will and his outcome.

Of course, as I sat there and just spilled everything out, a storm raged outside. Very fitting. The lightening lit up my room and I could feel the thunder through my body, it fit exactly how I felt. But after I cried and yelled, I started to feel at peace again. And just like the storm, my anger slowly calmed. I had reached my limit and I told God exactly that. It was a release. The next day I woke up to sunshine and know that this too shall pass. My storm isn't over yet, it may not be over for a long time...but I know it won't last forever. I have faith that this too shall pass.

So today, I decided to entertain myself by making a paper chain (like kids make as a countdown for Christmas) that starts from today, Week 26 Day 3, and goes to Week 34.

It took FOREVER...so much for that great idea. Once I got all those rings put together I just stared dumbly at it, realizing how many days I could be in this room. Good grief. And the positive? At least it took nearly a day to create, one more day down!

So I'll end with one of my favorite prayers:

"God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change;

the courage to change the things I can;

and the wisdom to know the difference."

Sunday, June 8, 2008

One more thing...

There is so much that I want to type and add to this blog. But for some reason, it just won't let me type and post the way it used to. I have been praying that this one thing gets fixed. 

Just know that many things have happened over the last few days that I have wanted to share and write about. I am hanging in there, although this resembles more of a roller coaster ride than anything else. Writing brings me peace and also allows me to document this whole thing, which I want to be able to look back on and be able to truly remember what was overcome. 

Thank you for being a part of this journey with us.

Special Day.

Today was bittersweet. Tim brought Sophie up to the hospital for a visit. I miss her so much, she made us laugh, which was much needed. 

The day started with my new special diet...not too bad, although the one thing I could control is now out of my hands also. No more finding comfort in a bag of Doritos and a Coke...
Tim said goodbye tonight also. That was harder than we thought it would be, all this time away from the Marines has turned us into regular cry-babies, I guess it was tough for both of us just because him leaving now is totally different than before. He has been my other "comfort" so now that I have to go without Tim and various foods I am starting to get nervous!

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Unbelievable.

The internet has not been working right here at all. So I can't post online regularly, which drives me absolutely crazy. My last blog got cut off, and so doesn't read right either.

This morning, I had my glucose test. To make a long story short, I failed it. So besides all of my current problems, I now have gestational diabetes. I cried. I'm mad. The last thing I want is to be on a restricted diet and have further complications. The more I pray, the more stuff goes crazy here. At least that is how I feel. 

Overall, I am trying to keep it together. Tim leaves for New Jersey tomorrow night for 12 days. I am dreading that.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Day Nine.

Nine whole days in the same hospital room...That is a miracle in itself.

Certain things have been helping me get by. One of them being the internet, which, would not work properly last night (or today) sending me into a fit of frustration and near rage. All I wanted to do was buy a dress shirt for Tim and post a blog online (easily the most productive things I would have done all day). Not meant to be...

This morning I had my growth ultrasound. The results are about the same:
~no fluid still! Huge bummer....especially since I have been drinking water like that is my only job
~Baby is just under 2 lbs now...he needs to gain 1 more ounce.


Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Day Seven.

Woke up this morning super groggy and out of it from the sleeping pill they gave me. That is because people keep waking me up to do things, then I fall asleep and my phone rings or another nurse comes in. I am exhausted...you'd think I'd be getting the best vacation/sleep of my life. The truth is: being in the hospital is exhausting and hard work!

I hope its the medicine anyways. This morning I had to drink this bottle of sugary water (the nastiest thing ever) so they could then draw blood and make sure I haven't developed diabetes. Mark that down on the list of awesome things happening lately. So now I feel dizzy and sick to my stomach. I would love to sleep but know its only a matter of time before someone else comes to torture me...

News update: While I was typing earlier a had a couple of visitors and had to stop posting, so now for the update to the 2 paragraphs above.
1. Baby is very active, heartbeat is good. He is a mover!
2. My blood work from the glucose test came back. I failed it by 2 points. Yes...I said 2 points. One of the nurses came in to tell me (she is awesome and one of my favorites) and I really didn't care until she said that now I have to do it all over again on Friday. Only next time I have to drink twice as much junk and they will draw my blood once every hour for 3 straight hours. In typical Julie fashion I completely freaked (she was laughing...so it wasn't that bad) and now I am over it. I won't be a happy camper on Friday though...because I can't eat all morning either. I accused her of messing with the results because I keep ringing her call button for water:)
3. While all this was happening, I got another huge surprise. My old high school boyfriend strolled in dressed in scrubs. We had been good friends through college and then once I moved to CA, we just lost communication. So, needless to say, I was completely dumbfounded to find out he is a medical student here at this hospital until July. Truly, God works in mysterious ways. Nothing like a good old distraction from my usual daily torture. I still can't believe it.

So like I said before...my mind is over-stimulated with all this chaos. Literally. I keep talking to God, praying, and just wondering if sometimes he is playing this joke on me...I mean seriously, who really checks into the hospital and then there is a helicopter crash, a run in with an ex-boyfriend, and various other strange events all in the same week?! Welcome to my life. God has a wonderful sense of humor, and thank goodness he blessed me with the ability to laugh at all of this too, or I would seriously would lose it.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Day Six.

Yesterday after I posted my blog, my day went from crap to completely wonderful. Funny how that works...I had a feeling too. Sometimes when things get really bad, I know that it HAS to get better. And yesterday, it did.

I had the most wonderful surprise visit from an old friend Kelly and her mom last night. They walked in and I was in complete shock and started to cry. Kelly was a bridesmaid in my wedding and I haven't seen her in years...I was so grateful for their visit. As my mom always said, "with true friends it doesn't matter how long you haven't seen each other, you get together and talk as if you have never been apart." Thank you so much for coming to see me...

After they left Tim took me for my daily wheelchair ride. It is warm here, so it was nice to get some fresh air. My mom pulled up curb side and dropped off some care packages that arrived to her house from everyone at A.V.C.S. 

I cannot thank you all enough for all of your thoughtfulness, everything is sooooo awesome and I am truly grateful for all the fun gifts and letters. The nurses are quite jealous of the fuzzy green blanket and my new slippers (which are both perfect by the way). And the reading material is seriously just what I needed. I will be emailing soon to set up a time for Chuck, Betina, and I to figure out a way for me to "see" you soon....via the web cam.

So today I just hung out and was able to my new book and the magazines. A pretty uneventful and blessed day since time went relatively quickly again. Tomorrow marks one week in the hospital...amazing. Thank you for your continued prayers, I truly feel the support and that is what makes this bearable.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Looney Tunes...

I am trying so, so hard. But today I am finally losing it.

Typing these posts helps, but many times I find I don't feel completely comfortable typing what I really feel, what I really want to say. It was the same when Tim was deployed, I would keep it together, have some slight outbursts when things got tough. But at the end of the day, my closet was the only place I would allow myself to break down. It was in the closet where I would find one of his old t-shirts, hold it to my face and breathe in. Laying down on the floor, among all of his clothes I would finally allow myself to let go and be overcome with my grief and worry in muffled sobs. 

Because let's be honest, people don't want to see that. And most certainly don't know what to even say or do.

Well, I don't have a closet here. But I do have the shower...and today, for the first time, I allowed myself to really cry. I hadn't planned on it, it just sort of happened. Each day has been a little more challenging and today when I looked in the mirror, I did a double take. 

Who was that person?

It certainly wasn't something I wanted to see; the pale skin, bruises on both sides of my belly and legs from my daily shots, and worn face. Good grief. I completely lost it...and it felt great. 

Most of the time, I'm doing okay...but today I wasn't, so why lie? God knows. God has a plan. I'm the one in the dark, who wouldn't freak out now and then? But I don't have to sit here and pretend to everyone else that things are just fine. He knows, and I know that He wants me to allow myself to succumb to this whole experience and simply trust him. But pretending to be fine only gets in the way...and how does that solve anything? And then I realized that I am being transformed...and that is almost always a painful process. That is why many people fight it, refuse to change, and deny to accept what is laid before them.

Then I read my devotional this morning. It wasn't some miracle. Reading it didn't take all of my pain and suffering away. But I read a sentence that did bring me some peace...

"Great faith must have great trials."

So right now I am at a loss for words. All I can think to do is pray. Just trying to make sense of so many different things that no one should have to consider...no one should have to endure all at once. But I still have faith. Faith that this too shall pass. That one morning I will be able to leave this hospital and know that I was able to overcome the worst of circumstances, which will give me the courage to face whatever it is God has in store. Whether is be Will's death or his new life...this is preparing me for a plan other than my own.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Day Four.

This morning was a mental challenge. Woke up bleeding again unfortunetely, but the nurses said this is "normal" (as if anything going on with me is normal at all right now!). Tim spent the night at our house to take care of some things and to bring me some fresh clothes, so it was lonely to wake up alone and spend the morning trying to occupy myself. But the friendly nurses kept me company until Tim rolled in with lunch around noon.

I begged and pleaded to go outside today in the wheelchair and my wish was granted. Tim wheeled me out front to some benches outside the hospital this afternoon where I actually got some fresh air and sunshine for the first time since Thursday...my mood drastically improved. Its amazing what a little sun can do. While we were sitting there chatting, we saw the most ridiculous thing....some dude walks out in a hospital gown and pajama pants, dragging his IV line and then stands on the corner and lights up a cigarette. 
Classic. So much for my fresh air, jerk...

Very active baby today, he was all over the place during monitoring. Even kicked the paddles, my mom just laughed and my brother was getting all bent out of shape because the volume was turned up. Will's heart beat sounded like a galloping horse. 

One more day down, I am beginning to just take it hour by hour. I am so grateful these last few days have gone relatively quickly. Thank goodness for your prayers and a wonderful little thing called the internet...