Monday, January 18, 2010

Chloe is Fitting Right in to Family Life!

January 18, 2010 Great things are happening in the life of our little Warrior Princess. Chloe will be nine months old in two days! When I reread some of the things I have written over these past nine months it does not seem possible that we haven't lived an eternity. Time really is so relative a concept! Those early moments, days, weeks,! Some days so grueling, so scary-some days so hope filled, so full of joy-some days grueling AND full of joy! I am just thrilled to the bone to be able to report such positive and sometimes remarkable news since Chloe has been out of the hospital! Time seems to have slowed to a fairly normal pace, acceptance of life after Chloe's birth is becoming the new normal and adjustments are coming along well. There will be many times ahead to 'test our metal' as my mother would say, but for now, we are thankful to God each and every day for the special time at home without new issues to deal with. Miss Chloe is THRIVING! As you can see from pictures, she looks absolutely healthy and continues to develop as babies do! Her mommy and daddy find ways to include her in so many, many of the family's activities and as life unfolds as it is suppose to, she has been included in family gatherings and even for a while in Kadin's birthday party! Jennie is careful not to expose her to many germs or too much stimulation, but she seems to have found a wonderful balance in all things. Sierra and Kadin both have had colds and of course this caused a bit of anxiety. TONS of hand washing, sanitizing and some built up immunity in Chloe prevented her from catching them and we all just applauded her! It has been so cold here most of the winter so extra precautions are taken because of the respiratory situation, but Chloe also has had some time out in her stroller checking out the neighborhood! I hope everyone has seen the picture of her in her lamby coat! It is adorable and they were on the way out the door for a walk. I just love being able to say that Chloe has done regular, everyday, normal baby things! I certainly had moments earlier on that I wondered if this would ever be the case. Let the good times roll! She has had some difficulty with getting a couple of teeth in, but boy are they cute! Once they all pop through she will have five. Jennie is so funny. She has a beautiful smile, but does sort of have 'big teeth' as she says. Unfortunately, says Jen, Chloe seems to have inherited the teeth from her mommy! They fit her though and just make her cuter with each one that pops through. I do believe that the dentist wants to be included in her next surgery to get some really good x-rays while she is sedated in order to get an idea of what may be happening in this area. For now, she teethes like baby teethe! The hardest tooth presented some pain and Chloe does have such a high pain threshold that reacting so strongly, with real tears even! said a lot. One of the hardest things for all of us I think is not ever having heard her cry. She certainly can show displeasure with looks on her little face or extra kicking of little feet, but because of the trach, there has never been sound. Someday. She continues to learn more signs and with Sierra's help and devotion, will be signing sentences in no time! After Kadin's birthday party I hung around for quite a while, part of the time Sierra was teaching me the American Sign Language alphabet! We also watched a video and looked up a few signs in a sign language book they have. Fun, fun, fun! The teacher in me LOVES to have Sierra teach ME things! Two things I know Chloe will never be without in this family are love and exciting activities to take part in! Tonight, I am VERY happy to report, Chloe has had the second night in a row of a NEW NIGHT NURSE! Hip Hip Hooray! This has been one of the more challenging parts of having her home, as day nurses have worked out so well and night nurses have been...well...not working out so well. So, it does look like a good nurse has been trained and so far seems to be a good fit for the family. They have had nurses who fall asleep and nurses who have not been up to the task of taking on little Chloe. She is complicated, but really not that hard to deal with in the nighttime hours. She sleeps through most of the night and rarely seems to have the oxygen level drop anymore as long as she is suctioned regularly. It does take a special nurse to do this though, and hopefully this new one will be very special! Another one is in the process of training, so there may be TWO before you know it! Prayers, prayers, prayers on this front still, as this has been quite exhausting for Jennie because she is the one mostly up in the day and the nighttime both! My daughter is quite an amazing woman and I will never be able to express how proud I am of her. Lance absolutely does his part, but when there IS work this winter, that is what he needs to be doing and we like for him to have a bit of sleep to keep him from falling off of roofs! I couldn't be prouder of both of them! I'll leave it at that! So, with nursing in place and just a fairly normal schedule of life in the making, so far 2010 has been going quite well! Chloe will be getting a new and much better hearing aid this week from another parent in town who is not using it now. This is very exciting! She is healthy and we are wealthy in so many ways that have absolutely nothing to do with dollar bills! I remain forever grateful to each person in this group who continues to pray, encourage and support us all. I am following so many children in need of prayers and can truly share my experiences with this group in a very positive and hopefully encouraging way with other families. YOU prayed for us when we barely knew our own names anymore! YOU offered love I never knew existed and shared pieces of your own lives that kept us hopeful. YOU are all awesome and we thank God for you! One of my friends has a FB group titled Pray It Forward. Please look it up. It is what you all have enabled me to do! What could be better than that? Just look how far we have all come together! Peace, love and God's blessings to you all, Nancy

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