Saturday, February 5, 2011

A little history in the making of us...

So far my writing has been all about Kai. While he is the fire in my passion, I do have a husband that is the love of my life and a daughter that is the lilt in my laugh and I thought it high time they be introduced as well. I met Cameron about 4 years ago. I wont say how because that is our story, but I will tell you it was a whirlwind romance, so to speak. I pretty much moved in with him after the 3rd date, and I had never lived with another boyfriend, ever! I dont know if even after 3 dates he could be called that, but he was.

Within the month I drove to Georgia with him to spend the Thanksgiving holidays with his family in a cabin. We all did well to hide the crazy and had a great weekend. I was still in Respiratory School, so we came back home after the long weekend. We are a light-hearted couple that joke and poke fun with one another every chance we get. If you dont know us you may think we were borderline rude to each other, but that's just how we are, and we love it.

Soooo, we had been together a little over a year...I think. It all seems like a forever ago with all we have been through. I mean who dates, has two kids and gets married in less than 4 years? Oh, that would be us and in that order I might add. So yea, we were together a year in September or October, I cant remember and neither can he, and I was pregnant that next February! Happy Valentine's indeed. So, fairly new couple and now a baby on the way. We could handle it. And then the layoff came. His. And then the bedrest came a week later, mine obviously. I had some bleeding a tear in the placenta. Seemed Kai got a little randy in there and was tearing the house up, which all makes since now...

During our little 'break' that we had is when we received two pieces of news that rocked our world. I will tell you exactly where I was and what I was doing when we got that first call. Now call me stupid, but shouldn't the person on the other line calling to give someone potentially bad news perhaps read whats in the envelope before they call? I mean, this isnt the Oscar's people...Nope. I was on the couch, watching LOST. I had all the seasons on DVD and was plowing my bedrest through them. The phone rang. I new they would call with the screening results either way, but the nuchal scan looked fine, 2.9, high end of 'normal' but normal nonetheless...funny how the word 'normal' irritates me now. Anywho, the phone rang. I answered. Eyeballs still half glued to LOST. I heard the nurse introduce herself and say she was calling with my screening results and Oh my, these are not good results. Ruuuuh? <--Ya know how Scooby Doo does when he cocks his head sideways and makes that noise? Yeah, that was me. Of course she starts off with the worst first and all I hear is high odds for Trisomy 18. I almost tossed my lunch. I threw the phone at Cam and I dont know what I did, something dramatic I am sure. But that was that call. High odds for Trisomy 18 and Trisomy 21. He gave me some odds, which were SO wrong and off, but I cant blame him for not realizing how important those numbers were. Well the rest is history. We all know how that saga turned out. Great, in my opinion. Once we had the news of Down syndrome we ventured off to Texas Children's Hospital for a fetal echo because apparently children with DS often had heart defects. Our level 2 U/S looked great and she didnt see anything wrong with his heart, of course this was at 18 weeks. You cant see a whole lot except there is one.

So, 3 weeks later we got the other set of news. This was actually more devastating to me than the DS. And what really sucked was I knew before the Dr told us. We had the fetal echo, which is just a fancy word for an in depth ultrasound and measurements of the baby's heart and blood flow to determine if there were any defects. I had read up prior about the AV Canal, which was the most common heart defect, and at the time, to me, the scariest. I now know there are far far far scarier heart problems than an AV Canal. Unfortunately, I see them 40 hours a week now...But I was watching the screen intently, looking for a sign. Doctors would be great poker players. Let me tell you. That Doctor did not flinch or grimace or look sideways as he typed ASD at one point and VSD at another. I knew then. I knew Kai had the AV Canal. The doctor left the room and told the tech, who was fairly new, to keep scanning and practicing and get us some nice pictures. She did just that. While she was doing that, I burst into tears. I couldnt help it. I knew. Ach. But I didnt want Cam to know I knew, so I just apologized and said the DS diagnosis was all still new and I still get upset. We walked into the room with doctor when he was ready. He drew a nice pretty heart on the paper and said, this is what a heart is supposed to look like. Then he drew another, not so pretty picture and said, this is what your son's heart looks like. The good news was they did these repairs every week. They were highly succesful. And best of all, he had a balanced AV Canal. I still dont know what the balanced means. Usually I would run out and look that up, but at this point I was so tired of the numbers, the odds, the percentages, the likelihoods...I didnt care about the statistics anymore. All I cared about was given the defect he had, it looked GOOD, GREAT even. And I left it at that.

During our 3 months off that each of us had, mine medical, his due to the impending crash of the economy, we were able to get and deal with all of this news and do it in our own way. The phrase, Everything happens for a reason, took on a whole new meaning at this point. I dont think I could have held it together at work with all this happening and maintain our home life. This gave us a wonderful chance to absorb all of this info, educate ourselves and when we were ready, tell our friends and family.

I was released off of bedrest at 23 weeks and he went back to work a week later. Nice to both be back at work. A month or so later, Hurricane Ike made a direct hit over our area and tore the hell out of everything. I was 29 weeks pregnant with a child with a heart defect. Given the past failed attempt of the city of Houston to evacuate without mass catastrophe during Hurricane Rita, I wasnt going anywhere. A few hours later I almost wished I had. The first half of the storm wasnt too bad. Then the eye...eerie. Then, then it hit. The second half of the storm. It sounded like squirrel's running across our roof. We should be so lucky. It was the shingles being ripped off of our house. Then the water started. Drip drip drip...right on my forehead. Where was I? Was this Chinese water torture? No, it was worse. Our ceiling was leaking, right onto our bed. We got up, went to the living room. Worse. I sat on the couch while he went into the attic to look(I know, I know...very stupid, hindsite), and I sat on the couch...then about 5 feet in front of me the ceiling opened up like the mouth of Hell and just spilled to the ground. OMG. It was getting crap all over my 3 month old couch!!! I hollared for him to get back down NOW. We moved and covered the furniture so momma wouldnt flip out. Hey, I was pregnant...I had priorities.
All said and done, we lost our roof, 3 ceilings, including one directly over our bed, and a lot of our fence. Is this the pregnancy from hell or what? Haha. But by some weird force of nature, not unlike Ike, our roof, ceilings, new tile, new carpet and appliances were all repaired and done before I had Kai. Except the new carpet in our and his room. That was laid the day he came home from the NICU.

That's my crazy pregnancy with Kai. It was a rollercoaster to say the least. So, after his heart surgery was good and done and we determined he was a pretty healthy little boy we decided to start for #2. Little Lilah Jane. That's not her real middle name. It's her naughty middle name, but seeing how she gets called that more often than her real one, I should petition to change her birth certificate. And secretly that was the middle name I wanted, so this is my way of getting it. Even Daddy calls her that. We decided we would start trying that July but I figured we wouldnt get pregnant the first month, especially with our age, so I suggested we start trying in June so I could chart and yadda yadda just to be aware of what my body was doing. Well apparently I dont have to be aware of what my body is doing because it functions just fine on its own, old or not. So on June 15th, 2009, I got my BFP. I was shocked. We were both shocked. I POAS several several times. I wanted a digital to be sure, but he stopped the madness. So I just waited the 4 weeks to go to the doctor.

Lilah was born in March without incident and with 3 pushes, which is more than I can say for her brother. He requested forceps to make his entry more grand. He even had some decels to put threat behind the demand. Now we have Kai and Lilah. Two peas in a pod. The older pea is usually running from the pod seeking shelter from the baby pea, but they are best of friends nonetheless. Usually she is lodged firmly up his rear, but there are times when he is chasing her all over the playroom grabbing at her footed PJs while they both laugh hysterically. Those are the moments that make my heart soar. Sometimes I worry I had them too close together and am cheating Kai out of 1 on 1, 100% of the time to help him learn. But I know now he doesnt need, or want me for that matter, 100% of the time. He learns just fine on his own.


  1. Hi Julie, I just love the way you tell your story :-) Thank you for sharing!

  2. I loved reading this story. Thank you for sharing it with us.