So, you've probably been wondering, "Why hasn't Bree posted anything yet?" I don't have a really good answer, as it's not like I've been cooking (we arrived to a kitchen full of food, and had a wonderful home-cooked meal delivered on Thursday), cleaning (our friends also cleaned the apartment before we arrived), doing dishes (our friend who kept Jamison on Wednesday did our dishes while we were gone) or going anywhere...I've just been hanging out with my boys. I have been a little overwhelmed by all the change, and have been holding Nathanael quite a few hours a day, so it's not often that I have two hands available to type. (Right now he's asleep in the front carrier on my chest - so cute!) I could use prayer for a good attitude right now, as it's hard to not be discouraged by our self-imposed "lockdown" or "house arrest", but after our conversation with the doctor on Wednesday we still think it's best to continue the precautions we started 6 weeks ago, so that means I just won't get out much. We did go to Ault Park yesterday, where we walked around - staying away from people and children's play areas - and got some fresh air while enjoying the view. It was so good for me to get out!
As for the boys, Jamison misses "Mommy, Daddy, 'inin house in Texas", along with some of his toys that I failed to pack. (Who would have thought that he'd miss a plastic frying pan so much?!) He also wants to play on his swing set outside, and he continues to talk about "big kids' Sunday School class" and is eager to attend. I have started to talk to him about how he'll go home with Daddy and Nana Joyce, but that Mommy and Nathanael will stay in Ohio to see the doctors. To help him understand, I've told him that Nathanael has an "owie" inside, that we can't see, but that the doctors can help fix. He asked me yesterday, "Tape it?" I tried not to laugh, as he does think that tape fixes everything. It's going to be easier for me to only care for Nathanael without chasing Jamison around over the next several months, but at the same time it's going to break my heart, as he is such a sweet little boy.
Nathanael, on the other hand, doesn't know that anything has changed, though I think something is going on with him - he spits up more often and is more fussy than he was a few weeks ago (though I suppose it could be my own diet - I've already given up tomatoes). He has been eating well...which also means that we change LOTS of wet and dirty diapers, and that he's "growing like a weed" as Jamison likes to remind us. :) I thought it would be fun to look at some comparison pictures in his car seat.
Here he is at 4 days old (8 lbs or so) - the day he came home:
In the next one he's 2 weeks old (9/2):
Here he's 5 1/2 weeks (9/25), over 12 lbs now, and has grown almost 2 in!
Yes, one of my friends accurately called me "a great cow"...and I'm so thankful! Not that having a large baby was ever a goal or concern of mine, but given our feeding struggles the first time around, it is such a blessing to not have those problems now. Since many transplant patients have trouble eating at some point during their treatment, I'm especially grateful for Nathanael's healthy appetite and weight gain now. Of course, I think his longer stay in utero (11 days past my due date, and 3 1/2 weeks longer than his big brother!) allowed him more time to gain weight as well, and so it makes me thankful for those last weeks, uncomfortable as they were.
So when you pray for us, please pray for Nathanael's appetite, pray for his protection from mouth sores during treatment, and for him to continue to eat and grow throughout treatment. One doctor did mention that some babies stop nursing and never start again, yet every doctor we've met has reminded us of the benefits of breastfeeding, especially for a WAS baby, because of the immune benefits transferred through a mother's milk. So if he decides not to nurse for awhile I'll be spending lots of time with a pump, and as some of you know, nursing a baby is much easier - and better cuddle time! - than using a pump. ;)
I will do my best to post more often, as I think it will be good for me to share with you, and I hope it will encourage you as well. We do appreciate your prayers, we love getting your messages - email, phone, FB - and are thankful for all of you who are joining us on this journey.