Please pray for his lungs and for infection to stay away, pray for Tonya's physical recovery and for Matthew's NICU stay to be short so that he can go home to be with his mom and dad and his two very excited big sisters.
We're back from Chris' sister's wedding and in the midst of packing. I think it's all going to get finished, but you know, I guess it is going to get finished, because really, there's no other alternative.
I wish I had some cute pictures from the wedding, but I completely forgot to take any pictures of the three of us all dressed up. Hannah was the cutest junior bridesmaid ever! I carried her down the aisle and then promptly passed her off to my mom before she started fussing. It was really sweet.
It was a tad stressful trying to balance feedings and pictures and family and making sure I was eating and drinking enough (breast feeding takes a lot of calories and hydration). I was exhausted by the end of Saturday and we still had our 5 hour drive home. Thankfully, Hannah slept almost seven hours last night and we were able to get some good rest.
Speaking of breast feeding, I had a huge scare last week after I posted about all the stuff we've got to do. I am pretty sure I had a big dip in my supply and after a couple of teary phone calls to friends and a trip to the lactation consultant at the hospital, I think it can all be traced back to stress. Apparently, stress can really affect your supply. So now, I am focusing on relaxing when I nurse as opposed to worrying about all the stuff we need to do, and making sure I'm drinking lots of water and eating well.
Chris is doing the majority of the packing, though I'm helping when I can. I'm only able to pack in spurts, because Hannah insists on nursing every two hours during the day (but hey, who am I to complain when she sleeps seven hours in a row at night?!). When I am able to pack I have a 9 lb baby strapped to my chest. It looks something like this...
This is such a sweet time and I know I'll carry these memories with me for the rest of my life. The sound of her soft breathing, the gentle sucking noises as she nurses her paci, her little hand resting on my chest as she sleeps all wrapped up next to me. All she wants right now is closeness/cuddles/touch and I am more than happy to oblige. No matter what well meaning family/friends/strangers/passers-by say: I know I won't regret holding her as much as I can. This is what she needs right now, and one day, when she needs her own space and independence, I'll do what I can to give her that too.
We took Hannah for her 2 month check up last week. She's in the 15th percentile for weight now, which is fantastic because she wasn't even on the growth chart when she had her one week appointment (when she weighed 4 lbs 2 oucnes). She's now 9 lbs 2 ounces and seems to grow and change every day. She just started 'talking' to us and I'm pretty sure we got a laugh today. She got three shots at the appointment too. Poor little thing. I hated it for her. Her face turned bright red and she screamed so hard that I had to cry too. I scooped her up right after the shots and she immediately went to sleep. I think that it was all just too much for her and she needed to sleep it off. She wasn't very fussy that afternoon but she did have an extra long nap before we went to our small group's going away/celebrating Hannah party.
Here we are at the party... Hannah wore her special monogramed tutu onesie, complete with brightly colored band-aids on her legs.
We baptized Hannah last Sunday and it was beautiful. I cried great tears of joy and sorrow and wonderment. She's engaged to Jesus now. Isn't that amazing? What an incredible picture of God's covenant love for us. My mind has pictured this moment for literally years... Owen always moved and kicked during baptisms. I couldn't wait to baptize him and wondered what it would feel like to stand before the Church and God and vow to bring him up in the Word and in the love of Christ. And then after he died, I wondered if I would ever get the opportunity to raise a child in the love of Christ and teach him/her all about God's covenant/never failing/unending/forever love for them.
Last Sunday, I stood there, with tears in my eyes and watched my little girl as she was baptized.
I have so much more to say about mothering a living child after loss, but there isn't a whole lot of time to write at the moment. Right now, it's sufficient to say that it's complicated, beautiful, sorrow-filled, amazing... and it's difficult to understand.
I'll catch y'all on the flipside when we're done packing and Chris is on his way out of town.