Monday, January 31, 2011


Today is a great day!
Today is day 6 and Rex was taken off his ventilator and doing great!
He is still requiring oxygen through his nose for breathing support but he is doing great on it. Up until this last week I never understood the severity of a ventilator until this whole process. I never understood that a machine is actually breathing for you because you do not have the strength to do so yourself, I never would have known that a nurse was required in your room every minute of every day. This whole process has provided Dan and I with more knowledge than we would have ever wanted but it has allowed the ability to empathize with people. My heart still aches when I look at my little boy. I desperately want him to be up and running around.

Now that the ventilator is out they have started to ween him off of his medication that causes amnesia to the whole event and keeps him sleepy. It is comforting as a parent to know that he will not remember all that has gone on these last 6 days. But as he comes off of it he whimpers a lot and has a sad cough. It is hard to watch him cry and have some tears and not be able to pick him up and comfort him. They told us that his throat will be incredibly soar from having that tube down there for so long. He is able to move a lot more than before and always tries to flip onto his stomach when sleeping, his favorite position at home!

I am supposed to get to hold him today but have not gotten to yet. He has been breathing pretty fast still and they don't want to disturb him too much. I'm pretty sure if they were not constantly watching him I might have to grab him and pick him up!

Quinn and Myla are so anxious to have him home and things back to normal. That will be an awesome day! Yesterday Dan was told still 5-7 days before they anticipate us going home. I'm pretty sure that still sounds like an eternity to me but at least without the ventilator in we can interact with him a lot more and I was told maybe even get a smile out of him tomorrow! That will be beautiful.
It is unbelievable the stories that Dan and I have heard while being up here, it makes up continually grateful for the progress that Rex has made and continues to make. It makes us cling all the more to our Lord and Savior in our time of feeling helpless and it makes us not take forgranted the hugs and kisses that we get from Quinn and Myla. It seems like a month in the NICU was a breeze on our hearts compared to the last few days.

We have not wanted to post a picture of Rex until today. He didn't look anything like himself and I don't want to ever remember what he looked like through all of this. Today however he looked extremely precious and so glad to be able to be somewhat on his stomach. What a handsome little guy! I could not use a flash so it is a little blurry.
We continue to be supported by amazing people here in Des Moines. We do not however need anymore food!! We have food coming out of our ears and for that we are truly grateful. Thank you everyone for all of your prayers. It really does help and the Lord really does hear them. Believe me, we have seen tremendous answers to prayers this last week. If anyone ever is wondering if the Lord is real and a personal God, HE IS! Dan and I are truly grateful for the Lord's love and peace through all of this.
We are anxiously awaiting taking another picture just like this one!
I hope this update brings joy to every one of you.
Today has been such an encouraging day for us. Hoping to hold him soon and get a smile!

Friday, January 28, 2011


We write to you all with tears in our eyes and scared but confident hearts... we remain confident that the Lord is good and in control and ALWAYS working for the good of those who love Him. What an amazing promise that He gives us to cling to in good times and bad.

I started my post with those exact words in July 2009 when I was 26 weeks pregnant with my babies. But those same words are true today, tears, but confident in the Lord.

Rex had been sick for a few days but was on some medication and things were looking up on Tuesday. Wednesday morning, he never really woke up. He was very lethargic and breathing rapidly. I brought him into the doctor and from the moment I walked in I knew something was terribly wrong. They were very quick to see us and assess him and before I knew it we were in an ambulance on our way to the ER. His oxygen levels were at 64% (ours are at 100%) and he was breathing around 90 breaths per minute (normal is around 25). I don't remember being so scared in my whole life.

Our home for the last few days and probably another week is the PICU (pediatric intensive care unit) where they discovered that he had severe pneumonia, RSV, temps around 104.7 that they struggled to bring down, and a bacteria that they knew was in his blood but were unsure of what it was.

They identified the bacteria (it has a long name) and are able to treat it more specifically and aggressively now. They have controlled his temperature and have him stable. He is on a ventilator and therefore cannot be awake. For first few days he was on paralysis medication, sedated with muscle relaxers, they took him off the paralysis meds which allows him to wiggle his fingers and toes and attempt to open his eyes. He peeked at me last night, a sweet ending to a long day for us. We can't simulate him too much because he tries to move more when he hears our voices. He wants to get up and play!

So now we just wait. Everything takes time. They are anticipating at least a week before our whole family will be together again. Quinn and Myla are such blessings and doing tremendously while Dan and I are up at the hospital a lot. Quinn and Myla are both sick too with fevers (that are controlled by Tylenol) and some bad coughs. So that makes my heart a little more heavy and it makes things a little more difficult to be away. The doctors are not concerned though about them developing the same things as Rex, but gave us a lot of signs to look for and be aware of.

We have once again been BEYOND cared for by our friends around us. I'm not sure we would make it through without the millions of people offering to help at every moment. Blessed does not even sum up what we are to be surrounded by such amazing people who are dying to serve us, help take care of our kids, bring us meals, and PRAY. I cannot tell you how many people are praying for our little man, although my heart aches constantly it is so reassuring the people that are lifting him up and blessing our lives. "Thank you" does not even express our gratitude to everyone.

Last night before bed Quinn hugged Myla and looked at me and said "we're missing one" - my aching heart's thoughts exactly! It seems weird to make them breakfast with one empty high chair, it seems weird laying Myla down alone in her room, it seems so easy trying to keep two children content vs. three. We anxious to all be together again and Quinn and Myla are anxious to have their buddy back, they desperately miss him! I'm looking forward to him being off the ventilator and holding him in my arms again, although I'm not sure I will EVER let go!

Please continue to pray for him and a quick recovery. He is a fighter. He always has been. He fought Myla for 32 weeks to have the largest space in my uterus. He fought through a month in the NICU with no major setbacks. He has been fighting the last few days the doctors are pleased with his progress because he came in so critical, but the road ahead still looks long to me. So pray that he keeps fighting. Pray that Quinn and Myla fight off what they have so they can be around other kids and eventually come see Rex when he is out of intensive care. Pray that I get to hold him in my arms again soon. We are truly thankful for his progress and his stability but are so anxious to have him running around again! That will be a blessed day!

I gave Rex a haircut about a week ago. So his Tom Brady hair is gone but he is still so handsome!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Exciting News!

I'm embarrassed as to how long it has been since I last posted an update for you all, but in my defense I have a VERY GOOD EXCUSE!

I have been spending my free time NAPPING! I'm taking on the exhausting (but very rewarding) job of growing


Yes, We are expecting our fourth blessing. We are thrilled and truly thankful to be having another child. I am due around August 8th, I believe, making me almost 9 weeks along. My first appointment is not until Monday the 10th so I am anxiously awaiting hearing the heartbeat and making sure everything looks good.

The funny thing about this baby is that it refuses to be forgotten throughout the day. You might be asking yourself how it does that.... by making me throw up, nauseous and exhausted all day. I think that this child is wanting to make their presence known in our busy household!

Another funny thing so far in my pregnancy is that I have had cravings for very particular things and then I am repulsed by very particular things, and let me tell you, I could crave something one moment and an hour later the smell of it makes me sick. Such a funny thing to think about. I don't remember ever having cravings with my other children and it is not a I need this right now but more a that sounds delicious or that sounds terrible.

Dan has been amazing through all the nauseous mornings and nights and my kids have been bearing with me as well. I am praying that all the morning sickness and exhaustion go away in the next few weeks. With my other pregnancy (although I never threw up) the exhaustion left right around 12 or 13 weeks. We are quite convinced that it is one sassy girl that we are having due to the sickness and crazy cravings. We would be thrilled regardless! I have had other people mention that they think it is twins again because I have been so sick. The chances of having twins a second time increases after having twins once but it seems too crazy to think about. Whatever happens we are pretty good at rolling with the punches and making the most of what the Lord gives us.

We would ask that you be praying for a healthy little baby, an end in the morning sickness, a safe and easy pregnancy and NO BED-REST. It is hard to not let my mind go to the possibility of that but I KNOW THAT GOD IS GOOD and HIS PLAN IS PERFECT and I just need to lean on Him and trust Him.

We are extremely excited, feeling beyond blessed and truly thankful for the blessing of children.

The other day when talking about the baby I told Quinn that mommies belly would get bigger as the baby was growing. He looked at me and said, "it will keep getting bigger and bigger and bigger and bigger and bigger" (probably 6 or 7 times). All I could do was smile, yes, I thought my belly will be getting bigger, Praise the Lord!