Tuesday, January 18, 2011

You have put Gladness in my Heart- Psalm 4:7

God is great! Our appointment was a comfort to Andy and I. Every time we go to appointment we are scared of what we might be told about Jackson. This appointment went as good as it could go. No new information or conditions just two we were already aware of. We met with our Maternal Fetal Medicine Specialist, Dr Williams. We had an ultrasound to do all the typical measurements. The Ultrasound Tech started the ultrasound. I had been waiting for them to call me back so Andy hurried to the bathroom before they took us back. They called me right after he left. I asked if we could wait on him but she said we should start. It seemed like an eternity before he returned. He looked concern like he had missed something, but we really weren't looking at anything we could make out or the tech could even tell us. During the ultrasound I started feeling really weird, I looked over at Andy and said I'm feeling really hot. The Ultrasound tech overheard me and told me to hurry up and sit up. I was going to pass out. She said when pregnant women lay on there backs it cuts off the oxygen to there brain and can pass out. I thought it was just my nerves. I always heard not to lie on your back, but thought it was just uncomfortable for pregnant women. I didn't know this would happen. Well they got me situated and placed me on my side and resumed the ultrasound. Jackson was head down and we couldn’t really get a good look at him. That is Andy and I couldn’t get a good look at him because everything else the tech was looking at wasn't recognizable to us.  She finished and Dr. Williams came in to explain any and all findings. She said he is looking good no new abnormalities or concerns. She said he is a little small. He is measuring in the 20% head measurement and 5% for his abdomen (which given the situation of the ompalocele isn’t uncommon) She said his liver is still down, not in either the omphalocele or his chest cavity. This statement was what I was looking and praying for. Although, this could change anytime. The hernia allows organs to move in and out, but on both of our checkups it was down. This is a huge milestone and such a blessing for Jackson. Another concern of mine was to hear if he had Hydrops, which is where fluid is in the abdomen or chest cavity and can create problems for the baby. The Doctor said there was no sign of Hydrops at this time. This is another issue that could change at anytime. But at this point I'm still shouting Hallelujah and Thanks to our wonderful God! After she told us the good news .I was relieved and ready to start my questions. I think Andy was too. Most of the time I’m too shocked at our appointments and can’t seem to talk. 

Here where some of our questions and her answers:

Are you still saying we should deliver natural?
Yes as long as the Omphalocele doesn’t get any bigger and if the liver stays out of the Ompalocele.

When will an induction date be set? 
At 37 weeks. March 25th and depending on his size. If he looks like he still needs some time to grow we will go at 38 weeks.

Will an MRI be done to determine liver position or lung development?
At this point no, the liver is in the abdomen and lung development cannot be determined from MRI. It just gives us an idea if they are developing because of the placement of the organs. 

Can another amniocentesis be done to determine lung development?
From the amniocentesis we can determine if they are developed but not how much, so it really wouldn't give us any new information. She said the only way to determine his lung development is to wait until he is here. Nothing other than check ups will be done before he gets here.

Who will deliver him? 
There are a group of four OBGYNS in her practice and whoever is available will deliver him. Of course they will be aware of his condition.

How often will we start coming up for checkups and ultrasounds?
Every 4 weeks. So only 2 more visits until he is here. I will continue my OB visits with my Doctor here in Evansville.

After our questions we meet with Dr. Williams head RN nurse and were told we would take a tour of the hospital, Riley and the NICU. Then meet our Pediatric Surgeon (This doctor will be involved to help determine the need for ECMO, complete the procedure for starting/ stopping the baby on ECMO if necessary and to conduct the surgery to repair the hernia and Omphalocele. ECMO- A machine that bypasses the lungs and performs gas exchange in the infant's blood until damage to his lungs or heart can heal or be repaired.) Everyone that we met is great and so kind. I would hope that would come along with the job but you never know what to expect. 

      We started our tour and the nurse was also trying to schedule us to see our Neonatologist (These doctors will be very involved in the day to day decisions once the baby is born. Their responsibility is to implement  the protocols for ventilation and assess and respond to any other issue that might arise while your baby is stabilizing and hopefully getting better) for an appointment, but she was in a delivery so we decided we would meet with her in 4 weeks instead.
     The Nurse showed us the Labor and Delivery room and explained once Jackson is born he will be taken immediately across the hall from the room to be stabilized in what’s called the Island. She said Andy will be able to go in the room and keep me updated on Jackson’s progress. She said family is welcome to stand outside of the room but are not allowed in. The room was very small. I'm afraid even if they did let everyone in it wouldn’t hold everyone! I’m sure they’d try, though. She said once he is stabilized they would put in an incubator box and wheel him in my room before they took him to the NICU at Riley. I was relieved to here this. I was afraid I wouldn't be able to see him until I was up and about . I did ask her if getting an epidural will hurt his lungs at all. She said if anything they would encourage it so I would be relaxed and therefore he wouldn't have any added stress once he is delivered. This too was pleasing to hear. I was willing to go au natural but knew I would be a lot to handle along with all the emotions that I will be feeling that day. I did ask her the golden question my mom was waiting on “How many people can be in the delivery room?" She said three. I knew my mom would be relieved to hear this. She said once I deliver him they will keep me for about three hours to make sure I was OK but I would be taken to a recovery room over at Riley during this time, so Andy wouldn't have to be going back and forth from IU Med to Riley which is about a seven minute walk.
The nurse showed us all the waiting rooms and small nursing rooms that would be available. She did say the hospital provides a pump and there multiple units to pump in and refrigeration will be provided to store the milk in. She said I would just need to bring attachments to go with the machine. We continued the tour of the hospital then started to headed over to Riley, on the way we ran into our Neonatologist, whom had just come out of a delivery. She removed her gloves, shook our hands, and introduced herself. I was a good feeling to meet her and to know she took the time out to say hello and she would be the one in charge of Jackson’s everyday care!

        Everything is enclosed so no walking outside just a straight route to Riley. She showed us around the NICU. There are four different areas called modules for the NICU babies and all equally important. They don’t split the babies up by severity of their condition just whatever bed is available at the time. There are about eight beds in each.  At the time it looked as if all or most had a little one in it. I was surprised there were so many babies in there. The nurses where very nice and we were told he will have a one on one nurse each shift so they would be familiar with him and his condition. The nurse said Jackson will get to know them well and they will treat him as their own. This was good to hear. I wasn't emotional like I thought I would be, but I think it helped we had a good appointment to start off the day. One thing that did make me feel overwhelmed was she said Jackson will know me as his mom and it has been proven when the mother of the baby is around the baby does much better, they are calmer, there skin will pink up, and they show signs of contentment. I get overwhelmed just thinking about that comment. I can’t wait to see him recognize me and feel comforted.  I feel weird sometimes because some of the saddest things and little things that usual mothers don't think about it what I cherish the most. I just want to be given the opportunity to make my sons day go better by being there by his side. The nurse said I am welcome in there anytime. I had made a comment about wanting to be in there all the time, and she said you too will need your rest and sanity. That will be hard for me to actually do, but hopefully I will find a good balance between the two. We finished our tour and were shown a small Ronald McDonald house that was in Riley. She said it is a first come first serve basis for the parents and grandparents of the patient.  They can house 6 families for the day, giving us an opportunity to rest, shower, or get some laundry done. A lot of time they provide meals if someone has donated food for the day. The cost is $10.00 a day at this location and at the actually Ronald Mc Donald house. I was very nice and clean and I was comforted to know I could stay in the hospital and get some rest if needed.  The Ronald Mc Donald house isn’t too far from the hospitals and can house 52 families a day but this is also on a first come first serve basis. So we would have to call down everyday to see if something was available.  We do have the ability to stay with family while in the hospital and I am very grateful for the offer. I just think for the first day, week, or however long, I might want to be within walking distance of my son incase something were to happen. At this point everything is uncertain: How I will feel, what I will do. How Jackson will be, If he will survive or not, but one thing I am reassured is God will always be will us and show us what we should do. I will place all my hope in him and know he has a great plan for our family! 

To be continued .........I have more about the Surgeon visit but have to be on my way back to work! Sorry for the typos. I haven't had anytime to proof read it, but will hopefully continue soon.

Thanks for all your support and prayers. We love you all- Brandi, Andy, and Jackson!

26 weeks 

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Normalcy brings overwhelming emotions

So I haven’t posted in a while. I haven’t forgotten about my blog or those of you still thinking of us. I actually have enjoyed the last month or so feeling like a normal pregnant women. No appointments or big milestones for us pass. Just me and my ever growing baby bump. I am getting bigger and can tell Jackson is too! He constantly moves and I know his sleep patterns now. He is a night owl. I really hope that changes but I’ll take him anyway I can get him.  Along with feeling normal I've had some emotions that at times can be overwhelming. I think by letting myself feel normal I’ve let my guard down a bit.  Andy seems to think its hormones. I do agree, but every pregnant women experiences anxiety, worry and stress. I just think our situation has intensified all of those 200% or more. I have grown so attached to him and couldn’t imagine not having him in my life. My biggest obstacle is not being negative about the plan we have been given. My biggest fear is the plan for us as a family wouldn’t include our baby boy.  I know Gods plan for us or Jackson is so much bigger than just our little family. And I will continue to ask that he might use us to glorify him through this hard time. I also ask him continue to mold me into becoming the best women, sister, mother, wife, friend, and daughter possible through this experience.

Our next appointment is Jan. 14th. We’ll be in Indy all day. We will check in with our specialist. Have a look at our little one on the ultrasound, then meet with Surgeon and tour the NICU. We are hoping and praying for an uneventful trip.  Just good news for our little boy!

This is on my desk at work. When I’m feeling overwhelmed, as corney as it may  sound, I tell myself “ I am captivating and I should be reassured that God is my partner through this experience no matter how much I might hurting or question his plan he will continue to love us and protect us.

You are Gods Partner in mothering – in bringing forth life in another. While your heart drinks deeply and rest’s in God’s good heart, he “mothers” you so you continue to become ever more truly the women he created you to be- the women you truly are.

A life-giver
And Utterly Captivating.
-Staci Eldredge

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Our visit to IU Med and our Amnio Results

Well it’s been a week since our appointment and a lot has happened since then. I'll try to remember everything. The day of our appointment started pretty well the 3 hour drive wasn't too bad. I slept most of the way we had to be up around 4:30am. Andy and I were in good spirits we had good conversations in the car and everything seemed going our way. We showed up at the hospital and found our way at IU Med and signed in. I was pretty prepared with all of our paperwork insurance cards and one of my favorite things a build-a-bear recorder. (Thanks Casey!-My best friend Casey and I were talking weeks before and I was telling her I would get nervous about going to our OB appointments afraid of not hearing the baby's heart beat. So she got me got me the recorder to put in a bear so I could hear the baby's heart beat whenever I wanted. I was very touched by this and it meant a lot to me.) Well, while sitting in the waiting room I started to get anxious, so much was going through my head. I thought what a blessing it would be for the baby's omphalocele would be small or better yet gone, then I would think what if they tell us he has trisomoy and won’t live, or how long he or she would be in the hospital. Andy noticed I was getting upset he just said" breathe through your nose and long deep breath and relax. I was trying so hard but the tears couldn't seem to stay in. I seemed to pull myself together and we were called into the ultrasound room right away. The nurse explained she would go in and do measurements and look at the baby's body scan, then the Cardiologist would come in and do an extensive ultrasound of his or her heart, and finally or Doctor would come in and explain everything they saw.  She started the scan and she asks do you know what you are having and do you want to know. We both replied “We want to know!". She started the scan and the baby was in a weird position and already head down. I didn't take but a couple minutes and she said “I see his little penis!" It's a boy! We were both shocked we thought we were having a girl. I couldn't stop smiling we really didn't care either way, but I knew Andy was proud. She showed his stomach and right away we could tell the omphalocele was still there it seemed pretty large to us. By the ultrasound it looked as large as his stomach cavity. It was a little nerve racking because we know the ultrasound tech couldn't tell us anything, although we know a lot of terminology and what to be looking for already. I did ask her is that the omphalocele and she said yes. We did get a somewhat normal rest of the ultrasound she showed us his profile, feet and little hands. In his profile picture he was sucking his thumb again. I think he's going to be like his cousin Zaine:) this is twice now we've caught him with his thumb in his mouth. Being at IU med we did have a couple different students in viewing the ultrasound. I really didn't mind. One of the girls was doing the scan and she was pointing some things out then said " Oh there's his boy junk again" We started laughing.  She kept trying to get a view on the umbilical cord. I started to get concerned. From previous experience when they keep going over one thing , they are concerned. They stopped the scan and said the Cardiologist would be in shortly. They left the room and Andy and I had a chance to talk. I just kept saying " Can you believe he's a boy" Then I said I think something is wrong with the umbilical cord. He didn't really know what to think. All he said was It was sad because of all the unknown , any other time he would be jumping for joy he is having a boy, but it’s still scary and he just wants to have a healthy baby. I agreed I too feel like it’s hard to be happy when it could all be taken away in an instant. The cardiologist came in with three other Doctors. She explained she would do the scan of the heart and then explain her findings and have our main Doctor come in to explain. She started the scan and didn't say much the whole time, I was starting to get nervous. I would say about 20 minutes went by and she started talking. She explained his heart was fine everything was in order but it was on the wrong side of his body. Normally our hearts are on the left side his was on the right. I ask why that would be she explained he has a diaphragmatic hernia :
A diaphragmatic hernia is a birth defect in which there is an abnormal opening in the diaphragm, the muscle that helps you breathe. The opening allows part of the organs from the belly (stomach, spleen, liver, and intestines) to go up into the chest cavity near the lungs.

She verified since the hernia was present his intestine were in his chest cavity and moving his heart to the wrong side. She said there is no concern to have the heart on the wrong side. But the major concern would be since the intestines are in his chest. The growth of his lungs could be affected. If this is the case it could be deadly because there is no way to help the growth of the lungs once he comes out. She also said it would be impossible to know the growth of the lungs until he is delivered because lung tissue does not show up on an ultrasound. I was pretty shocked, once again we came for one thing and ended up with something new. She said with this abnormality, it was possible his defects could be linked to a syndrome : such as downs or trisomy. I asked her about the umbilical cord she said normally they are 3 veins or arteries in the cord he only has 2 and this could be a marker for a syndrome. It seemed as if everything was started to head towards our baby having trisomy. I just wanted to crumble. The Doctor came in and explained everything to us. She was very supportive and very informative. She said the biggest concern is the  diaphragmatic hernia, she stated babies with this are very sick and need a lot of help. She said with this abnormality babies have about a 50% chance of living. My heart broke when she said that  because that wasn’t the only thing we were dealing with, he still had the omphalocele to deal with too. The Doctor explained the omphalocele will have to be put on the back burner at this point until we get the hernia repaired. She did say the only thing in the omphalocele was the intestine and if they remain the only thing in the omphalocele I could deliver him naturally. This was the least of my worries but at least having him naturally I thought maybe I'll have a better chance of seeing him before the haul him away. We decided to go ahead and do the amniocities to check for the possible syndromes. We met with the Genetics counselor and she explained the possible syndromes he could possibly have. It was like I was at our 1st appointment all over again. I didn’t say a word. I was in shock. I couldn’t believe we talking about the what ifs and all the possibilities. She was reassuring and told us it's still possible he wouldn’t have any other chromosome abnormalities. I just had a black cloud over me and couldn’t get that out of my head.  They took us to the ultrasound room again where they were prepping for the amniocities. I started to get nervous , from all the stories I’ve heard it hurts a lot and can startle the baby. I just didn’t him to be scared too. I laid down and the tears started again. Andy was holding my hand he said” I don’t know if I can stay I might pass out”. He hates needles. I said I can’t do it by myself he said “I just won’t look" I agreed and said I wouldn’t either. We both just closed our eyes.  The Doctor had two rules don’t pull the needle out and breathe. So I just concentrated on breathing and honestly it wasn't too bad. It felt like a regular shot just will a little more pressure. About a minute later she was done. Right when she went to pull the needle our he tried grabbing for it. I don’t blame him I wouldn’t want that in my home either. After about ten minutes they released us to go home and said if I had any bleeding , heavy contractions, or my water was to break to turn around and come back to the hospital. I was thinking , “ its three hours away, that’s crazy” One thing that did hit me before she did the amino was she said if he did have trisomy or other deadly abnormalities a lot of times they baby will just pass and I would deliver. That wasn’t something I wanted to think about. I knew the rest of the day I would be on pins and needles thinking about the idea of delivering him that day.  If he was going to pass I wanted to at least see him full term and be able to hold my baby.  The ride home we really didn’t say much. I was exhausted from thinking too much and just wanted to lay down. Thankfully I didn’t have any contractions or any other complications from the amino. The Dr told us we would have the results in 24 hrs. We did the amino about 10:30 so the waiting started. The rest of the day I laid in bed and tried to sleep, but  most of the time I couldn’t. I didn’t cry too much, I just kept praying “ Please God let him be ok and able to grow up a normal child after all this is over.”  The next morning was pretty rough. I woke up early it was nasty and rainy outside and I just looked like a movie was playing up to something bad happening. Again I just stayed in bed all day. The phone rang a couple times and I thought I was going to have a heart attack every time. Andy and I had agreed we’d put the phone on speaker so we would both get the news. Noon rolled around and we still didn’t hear anything Andy was getting anxious and wanted to call the Dr. office. I said they’ll call. I wasn’t too anxious to call them I think I was just afraid of what they might say. There was one point I had a total melt down, Andy came running in the room and said “what’s wrong?” I had so much going through my head I felt like I was in a subway station. I  just said “ I’m scared” He said “ I am too, but we’ve got to stay strong and we’ll get through this. He rubbed my back for a while until I was starting to fall asleep. I finally woke up about 2:00 and still no word. Andy was ready to call then about 10 min later the phone rang. I think my heart stopped . Andy picked up and the nurse asked for me. Andy handed me the phone and put it on speaker. She said “ I have good news!”  Andy and I just started bawling. She said he was negative for the big trisomy 13,18, and 21.  She said for us to have a good thanksgiving the next day and we would have the final results in about 7days. We were so relieved I think we both cried  for the next 10 minutes, and Thanked God  for the blessing that  just happened. The last 24 hours were the longest of my life and the most overwhelming feeling ever. Good or bad I don’t think Andy or I will forget what we felt like that day.
          Thanksgiving went well we had a good time with our families and to our relief we were able to share our good news with everyone. I did have a small meltdown at our Thanksgiving. There were small children everywhere. I was fine with watching them and actually enjoyed it but one of our cousins had a two month old baby girl and her mom was holding her and asks if I would like to hold her. I just shrugged it off and said “she’s sleeping, Its ok” but she insisted I get some practice. She is a distant cousin and she didn’t know what we had been through. She put the baby in my arms and  I immediately felt overwhelmed. I played it off well and held her as I would any other time. It’s when I touched her little hand and she grabbed by finger when I lost it . I kindly gave the baby back in a hurry . The she walked away. Andy just looked at me like he was happy I was able to hold her and that’s when the tears started I never made a sound but I was bawling inside. Andy Just rubbed my arm and said he is going to be ok and you will be able to hold him too. I responded “ I knew that would happen , I didn’t want her! He could tell I was hurting. I pulled myself together and the rest of the day went much better.  
The rest of the week went well. I felt good about everything that  had happened. The anxiety was still there but was back to when we first found out about his omphalocele. At least he still had a chance and I could stop thinking about having to plan a funeral right away. I was even ready to start getting the baby room ready. Andy got  a call Tuesday from our genetics counselor and she gave him the rest of the amino test. She said all 46 chromosomes were normal and there were no other abnormalities. She said she would schedule or next appointment and we would be able to meet the surgeons and other specialist that would be working on him at birth. We would also get a tour of the NICU. Andy called me with the good news at work and I started crying again. I think I startled one of the girls at work, but I reassured her I was crying because I was happy!

Monday, November 22, 2010

2nd Specialist appointment.

Tomorrow we have a big day ahead of us. Since we have been informed of our baby's omphalocele we have yet to meet with a specialist. Its been a long 5 weeks but we've made it .We will be meeting with our Specialist to get a feel of what to expect for us and our child. Our appointment is at 9:30 we will be doing a High Def ultrasound followed by a Echo Cardiogram to take a good look at the baby's heart. After the ultrasound we should be doing an Amniocentesis which will determine if  there is any other abnormalities with our baby. We will also be able to find out if we are having a boy or a girl! At this point I am pretty calm and at peace. I owe it all to my faith in the Lord. I know he has a plan for us no matter how scary it might be. I just pray through our experience we might be able to encourage others that might be faced with something similar. Andy and I have grown so much these past 20 weeks it unbelievable. I am truly blessed to have him by my side and know he will be a great father. I will keep everyone updated as soon as we know something about our little one.  On a good note we will be able to stop calling the baby an "It".  We'll either have a Claire or Jackson tomorrow. At this point our bets are on Claire. I guess we'll see !!!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Journey through motherhood.

Nothing else will ever make you as happy or as sad,
as proud or as tired, as motherhood -Elia Parsons

This quote is too true. I feel as if my journey in motherhood has been a roller coaster and hasn't really even gotten started. When I think back before I was pregnant, I didn't look at being pregnant as already being a mother. I was so wrong, don't get me wrong I did give credit to those going through pregnancy. I just looked at it in a different light. For me as soon as I took that pregnancy test I was a mother.I had  given life to a child.  Your mom trys to warn you about this or make you understand but as we all know we have to learn for ourselves. My mom would always say," just wait until your a mom and you'll understand" - Thanks Mom! Again your were right! I remember the day the Dr. was struggling to find the heart beat for our baby and I was devastated. I hadn't really seen my baby as a baby, just a peanut or give him/her a name but it really didn't matter. Knowing a child is growing inside me was all I needed to feel. Over the past 2 weeks I've really started to fell the baby move around. Its like it's happening for the first time every time I feel the baby. Its truly an amazing feeling. The last couple nights the baby was moving around like crazy and kicking really hard. I was determined Andy would be able to fell it too, but every time I would have him put his hand on my belly . I would get so excited and say "Did you fell that?" But he couldn't. I'm just so anxious for him to be a part of our baby experience. I figure I'll give it a couple weeks and have him try again.

Thursday, October 28, 2010


I waited about a day after the appointment to start my research. I was terrified of what I might see.  I was determined to find some other women that were going through the same thing and children that had been through this too. I did find some women on Babycenter. Then soon after found that some had blogs about there experiences. These women and there stories are amazing. It just confirmed God's plan for Andy and I. Through all of this we will rest our faith in God that he will provide and give us peace in whatever we are given . I am determined to share my experience with others that might be faced with this one day and hopefully give them hope and confidence to trust in the Lord.

Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the Lord will all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all you ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.

I found some of this info on another Omphalocele mom's blog and thought it was helpful.Thank you Jackson's mom!

http://www.chop.edu/consumer/jsp/division/generic.jsp?id=81171 Children's Hospital of Philadelphia

http://allnurses.com/nicu-nursing-forum/omphalocele-baby-157511.html This is a nurses blog on taking care of omphalocele babies in the hospital.


http://surgery.seattlechildrens.org/conditions_treated/omphalocele.asp Seatle Children's Hospital: General and Thoracic Surgery

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Specialist Appointment

Andy and I didn't really know what  to expect from this appointment. I was under the impression I would do some blood work and a ultrasound to check for any markers that would show a chromosome disorder.
Over the past couple weeks we had heard so many stories that this is just a precautionary and had to be done. It seemed as if people were coming out of the woodwork with a story like ours( The Dr. saw an abnormality but it turned out to be nothing) I too was praying this would be the case but in the back of my mind I kept telling myself this still a good possibility of not having a healthy baby. We'll anyway we got there did a lot of paperwork then we talked with a Genetics counselor who verified we would have an ultrasound done to measure the back of the baby's neck to see if there were any abnormalities. We went back to the waiting room and waited another 30min until we were called in to do our ultrasound. The ultrasound tech pulled up the monitor and showed us our baby. From what we could tell things looked normal but were are definitely not skilled in this area. Our baby moved around so much. It would throw its hands up and kick its legs. I was so happy to see our little one moving around. When I saw it moving its hands around I thought Its going to be a talker like me , moving its hands around and all. At one point the baby was sucking its thumb.
Andy and I thought at that point things were going well. The ultrasound tech said the Dr. would be in shortly to discuss the ultrasound with us. We we waited for another 20 min for the Dr, then another nurse came in and took us to the counseling room to meet with the Dr. I started to panic a bit while Andy seemed to think it was good news the Dr. dint have to come in to the ultrasound.I was just being a worry wort.

The Dr. sat down and and I knew something was wrong. He asked why we have been referred to him. I explained my OBGYN thought the thickness of the neck was thicker than normal. He said at this point that wasn't a concern. He did say our baby had what was called an " Omphalocele". He wrote the name out for us then showed us a picture. The baby's bowels were in the umbilical cord. He explained the risk and gave us the choice of going on with the pregnancy. At that point my mind went blank and I honestly didn't process anything else he said. All I could think is my baby isn't going to live.This man just gave us an option of eliminating our baby. I was so confused I just saw it moving around and looking like a baby. He did explain that with this condition there could be other abnormalities involved : heart problems or other chromosome disorders such as Downs or a type of Downs that the baby couldn't survive out of my stomach. I was still shocked and couldn't believe that was the 2nd thing our of his mouth. He did finally get to the fact some babies are perfectly healthy and just have to have surgery when born. He gave us the option of doing the amiocities to determine if our baby had any other abnormalities. Andy and I thought it would be best to wait so we could give the baby time to grow and truly see what was going on. I was only 12 weeks and the baby would change over these next couple weeks. We made our next appontment 6 weeks away. Andy was amazing. He asked questions when I couldn't .If I would have opened my mouth I probably would have cried uncontrollably. The doctor would ask if I had any questions and I would just shake my head. As soon as the doctor left I started crying. I didn't know what to think. We came for one thing and left with something totally different. I didn't know which one was worse. I was quiet all the way home. I got home and just laid down. I was exhausted.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Jesus - Bring The Rain - MercyMe

2nd Appointment

4 weeks went by quick. Andy had decided to go to all of the appointments he could, with the chance of hearing the baby's heartbeat. The appointment seemed to be going well and since we should be far along  the Dr. tried to hear the baby's heart beat on the Doppler. She searched around which seemed like an eternity and after about five minutes of nothing and only my lonely heartbeat. I started to cry. Andy just kept looking at me and saying " It's going to be fine" and at that point I thought we had lost the baby. I just kept praying over and over. Please Lord Let me hear my baby's heart beat and please give me the opportunity to be a mother. I knew trusting in him would be the only way I'd be able to get through this. The Dr. said sometimes it hard to find the heartbeat and said she wouldn't send us home all upset and unknowing of the life of our child. She said she'd send  us to ultrasound again. After she left the room I fell apart. I hugged and held on to Andy  I didn't want to leave the exam room and go to the ultrasound for the fear of not hearing and seeing our baby again.

Just waiting to go to ultrasound was overwhelming. We got in there and I laid down. I was terrified.I just continued to pray. As soon as the ultrasound tech brought up the picture and baby she said "I already see the heart beating'. And she confirmed the baby's heart was beating and at a good pace. We were excited again.
It was such a relief but a roller coaster of emotions. We left the Dr. office and I got into the car and started crying again but this time praising God I still had a chance at being a mother.

The next morning:

I went to work as normal, but around 9 a.m. I got a call from our Dr. She said she had reviewed our ultrasound photos and thought something looked abnormal with the baby's neck .Which could be a sign of Down Syndrome and other Chromosome Defects. She said she would like to send me to a specialist to see what was going on. I got off the phone and called Andy right away. It was like all of those feelings the day before had come back. I talked with him for a while and he calmed me down and again said everything will be fine. We both agreed If this is what God has planned for us, we could handle it. I also called my mom and told her the news. Our specialist appointment wasn't scheduled for another 2 weeks. Over that 2 weeks I went though a roller coaster of emotions but all the while trusted in the Lord. I remember the hardest thing for me to hear . My friend Grant said" Think about it - You and Andy are strong, healthy, young people why wouldn't God think you could handle a special child. This child could have been given to another family that may not able to support it or take care of it." I agreed and knew this was true, but inside I was still sad  of all the unknown.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

The Party!

The week of the party we were trying to think of ways different was to share the news with everyone. Andy's birthday is the 20th so we decided to decorate the cake with our baby news. The next thing was to just get everyone together and get out the cake at the party.  We just decided to wing it. We got to the party and I was immediately anxious to get out the cake. Everyone had brought a dish and my parents had decided to do a fish fry. (Which by the way, they had been promising Andy to have since we've been together). . I finally ask my mom if it was OK to get out Andy's birthday cake while we had everyone around to dig into the food. She thankfully agreed and thought would be a good idea. All the while, Lee was busy making the fish. So I tried to drag him in the garage to celebrate Andy's Birthday and sing Happy Birthday. He was just looking a me like (What's the big Deal?), little did he know. So we got the cake out Andy made a little speech about the birthday cake ....yada yada yada... Just to get every one's attention most of them had the same look as Lee did. We unveiled the cake. My mom was standing next to me and I had her read the cake. She read it and didn't seem to get it . She thought it was Andy's Dads cake. So I had her read it again : and it said:
Happy Birthday Daddy! Baby Kremer arriving in April! She started jumping and gave me a big hug and from that everyone seem to catch on. Needless to say we never even sang Happy Birthday to Andy.