Sunday, December 23, 2007

We made it to Uncle Dan and Auntie Darlene’s house in Wisconsin for a visit. We’re all having a good time and I was so glad Elijah was such a good boy in the car ride. Elijah got to meet his mom and dad’s old church family in the Dells yesterday. He liked it. :) Hope you are all doing well.

Monday, December 17, 2007

It’s amazing…this is the 100th journal entry I’ve written about Elijah. When TV shows have a 100th episode, they do something special, so I thought I would do something special too. So, to commemorate Elijah’s 100th entry, I’ve written this one in blue – the color of his beautiful blue eyes. Enjoy J
Since I’ve already nicknamed one of Elijah’s doctors, I’ve decided to nickname Elijah’s pediatrician as well. Why not? J Elijah’s doctor has always been really nice, kind, and positive. He is responsible and tells us what he sees instead of predicting possible negative outcomes (when no one really knows what the future might bring). We’ve been told he’s a really good doctor and after all we’ve been through, he’s the only one we really trust. Early Intervention always raves about him and tells us we’re lucky to have him as Elijah’s doc. For all of those reasons, I’m going to call him Dr. Positive.
At Elijah’s appointment, we told Dr. Positive how well Elijah is doing (rolling over, giggling). He seemed to think that our little man is doing well. Elijah was squirming and jumping in my lap and was checking out the picture on the wall behind the doc. Elijah also looked at the doc with that little furrowed brow of his. Dr. Positive seemed so pleased that Elijah was looking at him and that Elijah was interested in the picture on the wall.
Elijah’s head is extremely small for his age, but this isn’t new news. We told the doc that we are focusing on Elijah’s development, which seems to be right on track. Dr. Positive seemed to agree that the important thing is his development. The good news is that Elijah’s head is definitely growing; it’s just growing at a slower rate than most kids his age. When you consider what he’s been through, it’s amazing that he’s doing all that he is doing. We remind ourselves that Elijah had a massive injury and he still needs time to recover. We believe his head size will catch up with God’s help.
Without any prompting from us, Dr. Positive mentioned that Elijah’s head does seem to have filled in some since the last time he saw Elijah. We think it is too, but we see him every day so it’s hard to tell the small differences. The doc hasn’t seen him for about seven weeks, so he would be able to determine a difference better than we could.
Curious how much Elijah weighs now? He is 16 lbs. 10 oz. That was a bit confusing to us since he weighed 17.3 lbs. when he was weighed at his neurosurgery appointment a few weeks ago. We mentioned this to Dr. Positive and he wasn’t concerned. Scales can easily be a pound or so off, so the important thing is to be consistent with scales. Elijah is obviously growing, so from now on I’ll ignore any scales other than the pediatrician’s for consistency’s sake.
Elijah is now 26 inches long. For both his length and weight, he’s in about the 80th percentile (for those of you interested in that sort of thing). In terms of his head circumference, he’s in less than the 5th percentile. The important thing to us is that his head and body are growing. We try not to get hung up on percentiles.
The only negative thing Dr. Positive said is that Elijah’s tone is “a little on the tight side.” He emphasized the word little. This confirms what Dr. Gloom said and since I trust Dr. Positive, I have to believe that it is unfortunately true. Dr. Positive didn’t make a huge deal about it; he just said it was a little tight. He didn’t seem too concerned at this point. If it’s just a bit tighter than normal, it probably isn’t that big of a deal. We just hope and pray that it won’t get any tighter.
Overall, it was a good appointment. Dr. Positive seriously said “Congratulations” to us three or four times. That obviously means he thinks that Elijah is doing really well. Personally, I think that means Elijah is doing better than he expected (perhaps a negative report from Dr. Gloom made him think Elijah wasn’t going to be doing so well). Anyway, the news is basically the same as before: We have an incredible miracle on our hands, who just so happens to have a small head and tone that’s a little tight. We remain optimistic that he’s going to make a complete recovery, despite everything that’s working against him. After all, he has God working for him.
I hope you’ve all enjoyed the special blue (especially long) 100th journal entry. We thank you all for keeping up with our difficult and joyous journey and for the hundreds of prayers you’ve sent up for him. He can still use the prayers and we thank you in advance for the hundreds more we know he’ll receive. Love, The Wagners

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Tomorrow morning Elijah has his four month check-up with his pediatrician. I’m excited to see how much Elijah weighs now. I know he’s growing because soon his 6-9 month clothes will no longer fit him. It’s amazing how fast he is growing!
Doctor appointments always give me a bit of apprehension, though. I’m always afraid we’re going to get bad news or negativity. Thankfully, Elijah’s doctor has always been kind and not unduly negative. I’ll let you all know how it goes. (And, as always, we could use the continued prayers.)

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

We got up bright and early to go to Elijah’s eye doctor this morning. And, whoops, we were late. I hate being late. Oh well, life is sometimes unpredictable with a baby. Things went well and they didn’t see any foreseeable problems. (heehee) He does converge when he looks at his hands, but that isn’t technically being cross-eyed. So why was I worried? Hmm, I guess because I’m a mom. :)
Elijah is far-sighted and has astigmatism. Even though I watched everything they did, I’m not really sure how they determine that. Anyway, that is fairly normal since babies have limited sight (their sight matures a bit once they’re one year old). The pediatric eye doc was really nice. She wants to see Elijah again in 8 weeks to check on him since he does have risk factors for sight problems. So, there’s another appointment to add to his myriad of doctor visits. I’m starting to think doctors just want to see him because he’s so cute. Ha!
Grandma Kathy is visiting us for the rest of the week. The three of us went shopping for a little while after the appointment. We had lunch together and I really enjoyed spending quality time with my mom and my little man. After shopping, we headed home for Early Intervention’s visit.
The visit with Early Intervention went really well too. They had nothing but positive things to say. Elijah really seems to like these ladies and really responds to them. He had OT and PT work with him and they gave me good tips on how to guide his development. I feel so blessed to have this training, because essentially that is what it is…training for me to teach Elijah. They saw how he was able to sit supporting himself with his arms and I was so pleased. I asked if that is good developmentally and our OT said, “For a four month old, yes!” My little man is not only doing well, he is doing fantastic! It warms my heart when they say things like, “Look at his head control.” “He’s doing great on tummy time.” "He really knows his mom." It’s hard to worry when you have so much positive feedback. He continues to not show any developmental delays and I’m so grateful.
The longer I live, the more I realize I need to give my worries over to God. To me, it has been so obvious He has answered an incredible amount of prayers for my little man. I’m sure those of you who continue to read this journal see it as well. What an amazing, amazing thing to witness! It was a good day, can you tell? :)
Thanks once again for the prayers. God continues to answer and we are so blessed. Please keep the prayers coming, specifically that Elijah’s head grows.
Tomorrow morning – aka this morning! - Elijah has an eye appointment. Pray that it goes well. He also has Early Intervention coming to see him in the afternoon. Pray that goes well as well. Anyway, I must go to sleep now!! I won’t be getting much sleep. Just thought I would let you all know about his upcoming day.

Monday, December 10, 2007

What am I doing? I actually got Elijah to bed earlier this evening, so I should really be sleeping too. That's exactly what I'm going to do now, so this update is simply to let you all know that we are doing well. Nothing exciting is happening; we’re just living and laughing. Hope you’re all well too. :)

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Life is good for this little Wagner family…
Grandpa Dennis is visiting Elijah. I suppose he likes to visit us too, but we know who he’s really visiting. :) Uncle Andy came over for dinner last night, so Elijah has had a lot of extra love this weekend.
Elijah has been much more active in his bath lately. It’s so cute to watch him kick in his tub. It makes more of a mess, but it’s definitely more fun.
The other thing is that Elijah was able to sit up – sort of – on his own. He held himself up with his arms for a few seconds this morning and we were so excited. It’s so great to watch him develop. He keeps meeting his developmental milestones on time and some even early. Recently I read that by the time a baby is four months old, they might be able to hold themselves up in a sitting position propped up by their arms. I’m pretty sure that is what you’d call what Elijah did this morning.
Keep praying for his adorable head. Hope you’re all having a great weekend.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

I’ll admit it; I’m a bit of a homebody. Lately I’ve been hesitant to take Elijah outside. First because it’s cold and second, because he does seem to be different now that he’s off of Phenobarbital, namely he cries more. I guess I’m a bit scared that he’ll freak out in public. I’ve felt like I had to get to know him all over again these past few weeks. Granted, I know babies are changing creatures and once you think you’ve gotten them figured out, they change all over again.
The good news is that he seems used to being drug-free now and I feel like we’re fallen into some sort of a routine. He doesn’t sleep as much as he used to, which I’m sure is a result of both getting older and no longer being drugged (he still sleeps through the night, though, which is such a relief). I also feel like I’ve gotten a lot better at interpreting his cries and anticipating what he wants and needs. He didn’t communicate at all at first (I’m sure you all remember his infamous first cry) and so I didn’t get the opportunity to figure him out as most moms would. Now I feel like I know him better, and as his mom, that means the world to me.
Elijah and I did venture out into the cold today. He accompanied me running errands and he was a real champ. He got a bit fussy waiting in line at the post office, but I also hate waiting in line - so I don’t blame him! Otherwise, he was really good for me and made me think I really need to make an effort to get out more. Not just for my own sanity, but to let Elijah experience more of the world around him (and, yes, to experience cold - we do live in MN after all:)).

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

It snowed again today and it’s so beautiful. Sometimes I abhor the winter, but on days like today when I can stay inside and cuddle with Elijah, I just love it. It’s like being inside of a snow globe! (It’s a bummer, though, that Andy has to drive in it since it took him longer to get home).
No one likes a complainer. Well, except for when Elijah does it. It’s so cute! When Elijah gets tired these days, he complains. He doesn’t really cry; he just talks about it, like he’s telling me how mad he is about still being awake. It’s the cutest thing ever!
And tonight, Elijah giggled. He has giggled before, but tonight he did a little string of them together and it was more than he’s ever done before. Andy and I just looked at each other and got these big smiles on our faces. “He’s such a good boy!” Andy said and I agreed. Elijah has always laughed more for Andy than for me. Apparently Andy’s funnier, even though I dance around and make funny faces constantly. Perhaps that’s why Elijah doesn’t laugh at me…he knows I’m a weirdo all the time. :)
Elijah also rolled over again tonight, so I was really excited. He’ll kind of fall over from a propped up position, so that his lower body is still face down, but his upper body is on its side. From there, he’ll kick his leg over to get on his back. I was really encouraging him to do it and actually got down on the floor to show him how. I have no idea if he was even watching me, but he kicked his leg over all by himself and did seem pleased with himself. I know I must seem like an obsessive parent, (aren’t all parents a little obsessive! J) but it’s such a relief when he does things that he’s supposed to be doing in the age range he’s supposed to do them. Then I can check it off of the list and let out a sigh of relief. Anyway, time to stop obsessing and time for bed!

Monday, December 3, 2007

I’m sure you’ve all heard stories, like I have, of incredible stories about recoveries from brain injury. A generic story goes something like this…a 17-year-old girl gets into a horrible accident after riding home from the prom with her drunken friend. She spends a few months in a coma and miraculously wakes up to find that she has to relearn everything again.
The truth is, what happened to Elijah isn’t really all that different. When I look at things in those terms, I am even more amazed at what Elijah is doing. He has one thing, however, that the older victim doesn’t have. Elijah doesn’t have to relearn anything since he hadn’t learned anything yet. The hope is that the healthy parts of his brain will take over for the damaged parts. I have always believed that this will be the case; I simply have to be patient. Sometimes those recovery stories take several years and I have to remember that Elijah isn’t even four months old.
Sometimes, while watching Elijah, I am utterly amazed that any of us develop into adults. When you really stop to think about it, there is an amazing amount of development that needs to take place in order for us to function in this world. Consider this – we all had to learn how to lift up our head! The fact that most of us do develop is nothing short of amazing and once again I realize the grandness of God.
Anyway, those were my thoughts for today. As for Elijah, he’s doing well. He rolled over today, but I was trying to fold laundry next to him and missed it. I kind of saw him out of the corner of my eye, but I couldn’t get him to do it again. I know he rolled over at five weeks (twice!) but he hasn’t really done it since (maybe a few times). I’ve been really hoping he’ll figure it out and start to do it more often. Hopefully he’s starting. Hope you are all doing well.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

I’m so happy it’s the weekend! I love it when our little family can be together all day long. I hope you all have a restful weekend. It sounds like we might be getting lots of snow. Stay warm. Andy and Elijah send their love.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Thanks to those who sent me messages of encouragement via the guestbook and via email. That really helps. Obviously, you picked up on the fact that I was a little down. It happens; I am human after all! I am feeling much more upbeat now. Getting encouragement and prayers from all of you certainly helps. I also read some scriptures from the sermon we heard last week about not worrying. That really helped. Watching my little man smile obviously helps too.
Elijah continues to be an amazing little guy. He gets stronger and stronger every day. Looking at him, you’d never imagine what he’s been through. You’d never know he’s been through more than most of us ever have or ever will. I know that one way or another, everything is going to be okay. Thanks for thinking of us.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

I’m so frustrated with myself. I find that I’m trying to avoid asking myself the what-ifs. What if Elijah’s head doesn’t grow? What if he has CP? What if…?
I know that I shouldn’t ask myself these questions. For the most part, I go through my day enjoying my little man. Loving him and kissing him and trying to stimulate him as much as possible. If you know me, you’d know that I’m a fairly positive person. I really don’t like negativity because I don’t feel like it gets anyone anywhere, other than a trip down depression lane. I try to focus on the good in life. Sometimes, though, that’s easier said than done.
It’s a lot of responsibility being a mom. Not that I didn’t know that ahead of time, but I just feel like I have extra weight on my shoulders. I’m with Elijah the most, so it’s up to me to make sure that he is getting everything he needs to develop. I know that I can’t fix his brain, but I can stimulate what he has. I can’t help but feel a little overwhelmed sometimes. I want to make everything all right for Elijah, but I know that only God can do that. This is the greatest and hardest lesson in faith I’ve ever had. Sometimes I wonder if I can handle it, but I know that I can do anything through Christ who strengthens me.

Please pray for Elijah’s head to have a growth spurt (is that even possible? :) - with God it is), that he will have normal tone (no CP), and for encouragement for me (and Andy too). We don’t know what we would do without our CaringBridge family of supporters.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Who knew taking a shower could feel like a mini tropical vacation? (Granted, it’s raining on the beach, but I like rain). Who knew napping would become my favorite pastime? Who knew you could love someone so much, when you’ve only known them for a short amount of time? Who knew life could be so wonderful, beautiful, and scary all at the same time? Who knew? I certainly didn’t, but I’m pretty sure God wanted me to know.
Elijah has been really fun lately. He’s bringing his hands together a lot and he’s been really good with tummy time. He doesn’t seem to get as mad about being on his tummy and he’s gotten excellent at his head control. He does little mini push-ups while I cheer him on – it’s so fun!
Yesterday I was laying a blanket on the floor and the corner of the blanket went over Elijah’s face on accident. I said,”Where’d Elijah go?” and Elijah pushed the blanket off of his face. ”There he is!” I exclaimed. Granted, I think that Elijah was just flailing his arm, but it was pretty cute so I decided to make it into a game. I kept putting the blanket over his face and he kept pushing it off. I’m not sure if he was connecting that he was the one moving the blanket, but he sure did seem pleased with himself and kept giving me these big smiles. It was a fun moment for me since he’s becoming more and more aware and therefore more and more fun.
We don’t have any appointments this week and that is so nice! Perhaps I can actually get some things done…perhaps. J
P.S. Elijah wanted to say hi to Grandma Teri. He said he’d be thinking of you tomorrow morning.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Well, we’re home after the extended Thanksgiving weekend. We had a really great, relaxing weekend with family and now it’s time to get back into the swing of things.
Fond memories of last year’s Thanksgiving came flooding back to me this weekend. It was a special one because we announced to our families that we were going to have a baby. I had this awesome speech planned out in my head. “Congratulations,” I was going to say. “Some of you are going to become grandparents and some of you are going to be aunts or uncles…We’re having a baby!” It would’ve been perfect.
Instead, my speech didn’t go quite as planned. Childhood stories were being exchanged around the dinner table, so I just blurted out, “Speaking of kids…we’re going to have one!” I barely got out that one sentence because I started to cry. There’s no way I could’ve said my little speech. The magnitude and joy of what I was saying came over me – that and those pregnancy hormones kicked in. :) Either way, it was a special moment and everyone was so happy to hear the news. It didn’t go as I planned it in my head, but it was sweet nonetheless. Life is like that isn’t it? It doesn’t go as planned, but it sure is sweet.
Now this year, the little one we announced last year was here with us for Thanksgiving. Elijah is truly something to be thankful for!
We hope you all had a great Thanksgiving as well…that you counted your blessings and gave thanks to God. We’re thankful for all of you…we hope that you know it!

Friday, November 23, 2007

If you’re wondering, Elijah had a wonderful first Thanksgiving. We had lots of yummy food, great conversation, and cuddles for Elijah.
He’s getting lots of attention right now as I write this from his Grandpa John and Grandma Teri. He sure is a lucky boy. We’re all relaxed and life is good. Hope this finds you all well and that you’re enjoying the extended weekend.
Oh, and there are new photos on Photobucket. As requested, there’s one with Elijah helping Grandpa carve the turkey. Enjoy! :)
If you’re wondering, Elijah had a wonderful first Thanksgiving. We had lots of yummy food, great conversation, and cuddles for Elijah.
He’s getting lots of attention right now as I write this from his Grandpa John and Grandma Teri. He sure is a lucky boy. We’re all relaxed and life is good. Hope this finds you all well and that you’re enjoying the extended weekend.
Oh, and there are new photos on Photobucket. As requested, there’s one with Elijah helping Grandpa carve the turkey. Enjoy! :)

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

I’m feeling better. Yay! I’m still fighting an infection, but at least I don’t feel quite so yucky.
Today was Elijah’s last day for Phenobarbital! We are incredibly happy to get him off of this drug. The most frustrating thing to me is that they told us in the hospital that Phenobarbital was a really safe drug and it’s been around for 100 years. That’s not really the full story. The truth is that Phenobarbital is a double-edged sword. While it’s great for stopping and preventing seizures, the side effects are not that great.
In fact, Andy did some research on the drug and looked into what they say about taking Phenobarbital while pregnant. Guess what? It causes all sorts of birth defects and cognitive issues…and small heads! While I know that Elijah wasn’t exposed in utero to the drug, it only seems like common sense to me that Phenobarbital might have a negative impact on an infant…he has essentially been on the drug his entire short life. Whenever Andy has brought up anything to the neurologist about Phenobarbital having an impact, he denies it…he always goes to the brain damage as the one and only factor. While we know his injury could have a lot to do with his head size, isn’t it possible that the drug is also a factor? Especially since a day before (in the womb) it would’ve been considered a risk – magically the baby is born and suddenly it’s safe? That simply doesn’t make any sense to me. We gave Elijah his last dose tonight – that is certainly a cause for celebration.
We saw a plastic surgeon and neurosurgeon for Elijah late this afternoon. They confirmed that Elijah’s head isn’t fusing early. That’s great news. There is a chance that it could still fuse early, but it sounded like that is rare. (So we’re not going to worry about it unless it happens!)
Basically, they think that his skull bones are overlapping because of his traumatic birth. They said they see heads like his sometimes when a baby has excess water on the brain – the skull pushes out to make room and then shrinks back down when they remove the excess fluid. It sounds to me that this is the same thing that happened to Elijah. He had massive head edema (swelling) when he was born – his skull obviously made room for his brain. When the swelling went down, his skull ended up overlapping. The hope at this point is that his brain will grow and push the skull out. Please pray that his head will grow and that it’ll start to round out. If his head doesn’t start rounding out, they could fit him with a helmet, which would help direct the bones where to go. While we don’t want that, it would definitely be a better option than surgery.
We’ll be going back to see these doctors in three months. Hopefully Elijah’s head will have grown and pushed out the bones by that point. They basically told us to take him home and rear him up. :) I liked these doctors a lot more than Dr. Gloom. They weren’t so gloomy.
On the way home, Andy, Elijah and I stopped at Perkins. Elijah got a lot of attention. “He’s so cute!” “How old is he?” “What’s his name?” “Is he your first?” It was nice to have people swooning over him – no one seems to notice anything about his head. He’s a beautiful boy and he is such a joy. We are so thankful for him.
If you’re traveling for Thanksgiving – be safe and have fun!

Monday, November 19, 2007

Hey everyone – I hope that you’re all having a better day than I am…I’m sick. Bummer.
I think that I have mastitis, which is an infection you can get when breastfeeding. It feels a lot like the flu and it’s not really all that fun. I think that I am starting to feel a bit better and thankfully Elijah isn’t sick too. Andy’s been a big help – not really sure what I would do without him.
Tomorrow we’re supposed to see a plastic surgeon and neurosurgeon for Elijah. Pray that it goes well.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Elijah went to church today and a going away party for his Uncle Dan and Aunt Darlene tonight. He had fun. He also wanted to say that Uncle Andy is awesome, but he sounded a lot like his Uncle Andy when he said it. Have a great night! :)

Friday, November 16, 2007

It’s a great news/bad news day.
The neurologist called this morning and left us a message on the phone. I didn’t answer because I was trying :) to take a nap with Elijah. Anyway, the doctor left us a message about the CT scan. I thought we would have to wait until Tuesday to find out anything, but we got news today.
The great news…the neurologist doesn’t think that Elijah’s skull is fusing together prematurely based on the CT scan. Yes! When I heard that, I wanted to jump around the room and rejoice. God has been listening to the prayers. How could I possibly deny that? (The neurologist was pretty convinced and quite convincing that it had fused during our office visit with him – somehow I don’t think Dr. Gloom knows about God and what He can do.)
The bad news…the scan shows the extensive damage that Elijah received during birth, which is on both sides of the brain. He believes that this is why Elijah’s head is smaller and his skull molding isn’t moving and rounding out. Basically, they think that his brain isn’t growing as fast as it should or as much as it should (because of the damage) and isn’t pushing his skull out.
This isn’t really anything new to us. We know that he has brain damage and that it doesn’t look good. We’re well aware of what the prognosis has been and that they essentially don’t know what to expect from Elijah, but it has never been much. Dr. Gloom would still like us to see the neurosurgeon and plastic surgeon on Tuesday to make sure nothing else is going on with Elijah’s head.
Anyway, this puts us in the same boat we were in before we saw the neurologist. We have an amazing little boy who is meeting all of his developmental milestones so far. He has a small head for his age, which isn’t all that surprising considering all that he’s been through. A small head, though (considering all he’s been through) is not a good thing since it means all sorts of bad things in terms of his brain development.
So I humbly come before you all to ask for more prayers. Please pray fervently for God to heal Elijah’s head and brain and to cause Elijah’s head to grow. Ask for a complete recovery for our son. Thank Him for all that He has done for Elijah already.
No human can make Elijah grow. That is simply impossible for man, but nothing is impossible with God. He made Elijah and He can certainly make him whole. I believe that and I hope that you all do too. We certainly still need prayers for our little boy. Thank you so much for all the prayers you’ve sent up already. I can feel the rejoicing that will be taking place when I post this in a few minutes and it makes me so happy to have so many people cheering on Elijah. God is great – and so it really is just a great news day after all. :)

Thursday, November 15, 2007

This morning Elijah and I were visited by “auntie” Heidi. The three of us had a nice visit. It was great for me to have my friend to chat with and it was great for Elijah to have some cuddling (I’m not sure if he gets enough). :)
This afternoon Early Intervention (a Teacher and an Occupational Therapist) came over to work with Elijah. They left a couple of toys and showed me some things to do to promote his development. The Occupational Therapist didn’t notice anything in terms of Elijah’s tone. That doesn’t mean he doesn’t have a problem, it just means she didn’t notice. I take that to be a good thing since determining tone can be pretty subjective. Since Dr. Gloom always seems to go to the worst case scenario, I’m hopeful that he’s wrong about Elijah’s tone. As long as it doesn’t get any tighter, I think it will be fine. At least I hope.
Elijah wasn’t awake for most of the visit with Early Intervention, but he was a little bit. He worked with the Occupational Therapist and was smiling at her and tracking and did really well. She seemed impressed that he is fairly vocal. They didn’t have anything negative to say, so that’s good. Hopefully he will keep on developing like he has been.
Please pray that Elijah’s head hasn’t fused together prematurely and that his head molding starts to round out on its own. That’s what we are the most worried about – we don’t want him to have to have surgery and go through another hospital stay. Continue to pray for a complete recovery. Elijah is showing good signs that he is going to do well. The tests have never said that he would, but God can do anything. We’ll keep you posted.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

If we could, Andy and I would trade places with Elijah in a heartbeat. It’s so hard to watch your child get a scraped knee, let alone what we’ve had (or may have) to watch Elijah go through. We know that we’ll make it through whatever the future holds for us – good or bad – with God carrying us through.
Thanks for the prayers – God answered another for us today…Elijah slept through the CT scan! J I was so worried about it last night and today. I know that neither Andy nor I slept very well last night. It feels like we’re going back in time. Here we are asking for our laundry list of prayers again in our journal and the very smell of the soap at the hospital brought me back to when Elijah was in the NICU and ICC. I don’t want to go back.
I do know that we’re going forward, not backwards. I watch my little man and then I don’t care what the doctors say. Elijah is a living miracle and he will continue to be one. God has not neglected to take care of us. He has answered every one of our prayers, so how can we doubt Him? I know that He has a plan that I may not be able to completely understand now. When you put things into that perspective, we feel like we can do anything. This is just our temporary existence after all. Trivial things certainly don’t seem to matter anymore.
Watching your son’s head in a CT scan, on the other hand, does seem to matter. It’s not really a fun thing to watch, but thankfully the little man slept through the whole thing and Andy and I were able to stand on both sides of him as the test was done. We have the film of the images, but of course they don’t really mean much to us. We’ll know more when we meet with the neurosurgeon on Tuesday.
Tomorrow Early Intervention is coming to work with Elijah. His development continues to be on track, which is what really matters. I still believe that Elijah can be completely fine. I can’t lose hope. I know Elijah has a lot working against him, but God, who made the universe, can certainly fix one little head and one little brain. Please pray for that.
Dr. Gloom wasn’t quite as gloomy today, but it wasn’t all sunshine and roses like I had hoped. When we got to the appointment, he said, “Obviously he’s made some improvements since I saw him last.” Have you heard a bigger understatement? He also said that the things we were reporting were good signs (that he tracks objects, smiles, etc.). Elijah wouldn’t perform for Dr. Gloom, though. Elijah had just woken up from a nap (we woke him up, poor guy) and so he wasn’t quite himself. He wouldn’t track for the man and wouldn’t really do much of anything. I told Elijah later when I was changing him in the restroom that it was okay he wouldn’t look at the doc, since I don’t really want to look at him either!
So, what about the gloom? Well, the doctor thinks that Elijah’s head sutures might be fusing together early. That would obviously be a bad thing since his brain wouldn’t have any room to grow. Dr. Gloom also measured Elijah’s head and it seems to have grown since our last appointment with the pediatrician. (These measurements all seem so subjective since whoever does it seems to get a different result.) He put his head in the 50th percentile, which is much better than the 5th percentile that we thought he was at. To me, if his head has grown, wouldn’t that mean that his head hasn’t fused early? But, alas, I don’t really know anything about these things and I guess we’ll find out more tomorrow.
Tomorrow will be yet another appointment for our sweet little boy. He’s going to have a CT scan to check if his head is fusing early. We’re nervous about this since he has to stay still for five minutes to get the scan performed. It sounds like if he stays still enough he won’t have to be sedated. I will do anything to make sure he isn’t sedated; I can’t stand the thought of seeing his immobile again! Please pray that he will sleep through it so that we don’t have to do anything.
Next week we have an appointment with a neurosurgeon. He will take a look at the CT scan results and determine if Elijah will need surgery. Of course, we all hope that this is not the case. But, if it is needed to help him grow, then we’ll have to do it.
The other thing the doc was concerned about was that he thought Elijah’s tone was a bit on the tight side. Our tone is controlled by our brain, so of course that is a concern since a tight tone can be a sign of cerebral palsy. I don’t think that there is much we can do about it, other than what we’re doing with Early Intervention…and of course prayers.
Who knew parenthood would be so hard? I certainly had no idea. Andy and I are handling this quite well, but it’s still so hard. We realize that we’ve got God on our side and we’re taking life one day at a time. If Elijah needs surgery, we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it. In the meantime, what can we do but focus on the little miracle we have in front of us and put it in God’s hands?
Tonight we could really use the prayers. Please pray that the scan will show that his head isn’t fusing early, that his tone is normal, and that he will be still for the test tomorrow. We really appreciate your continued prayers. We know God listens – we have proof in our arms!

Monday, November 12, 2007

I think I have separation anxiety. (Isn’t it the baby who’s supposed to get that?) It pains me to think about being apart from Elijah. Elijah, on the other hand, doesn’t mind being held by others, which is really great. From what I’ve read, separation anxiety doesn’t usually occur in babies for a few more months, and is a completely normal emotional milestone for babies.
As for me, I know why I’m so attached. First of all, I’m his mommy and I love him. Second of all, we were separated. I am still dealing with the fact that I didn’t get to see my little man the night he was born, let alone hold him (I think that is possibly the worst torture you could do to a woman). It makes me so sad when I think about it, which isn’t very often anymore. I know I will grow out of this, just as he will when he goes through it later. For now, I’m enjoying the healing powers of cuddling with Elijah.
Tomorrow Elijah has an appointment with his neurologist, the man affectionately dubbed “Dr. Gloom” (By the way, I wasn’t the one who came up with that name; it was one of you in the guestbook. I liked it and it stuck). I have mixed feelings about this appointment. On one hand, I would like to think that Dr. Gloom will be happy and surprised to see how well Elijah is doing. He hasn’t seen Elijah since he was eight days old, and the prognosis was grim. That was the day Elijah was taken off of the respirator, so obviously a lot has changed since then. I just hope Dr. Gloom isn’t so gloomy this time we see him. I hope he can recognize a miracle when he sees one.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

The three of us had a great weekend visiting Elijah’s grandparents. He was loved and cuddled as much as any baby could ever want.
He met some of his great-aunts and great-uncles at his great-grandma’s birthday dinner. He was a bit fussy through the meal, but he made it without needing to eat (I spent most of the meal wondering if Elijah was going to completely freak out, so I chewed my salad as quickly as possibleJ). It was really nice to see all of you!
Speaking of being fussy, Elijah seems to cry more than he used to, and we don’t see it as a bad thing. We think this is because he is being weaned off of the Phenobarbital and isn’t as sedated. We’ll see what kind of baby emerges; all we know is that he seems more like a “real” baby. Please continue the prayers: that his head will grow, that he won’t have seizures, and that he’ll be completely fine.
Well, off to bed for us. Make it a great day. :)

Thursday, November 8, 2007

I talk to Elijah about all sorts of things, because I figure it’s good for his brain development. I might as well talk to him now when he can’t get away from me, right? I never consider that he understands me, but sometimes I wonder. Anyway, this morning I was telling him about the day he was born…how it was raining and that he spent three weeks in the hospital. Immediately, he got a big pouty face and looked like he wanted to cry. I said, “Its okay! Don’t be sad, sweetie, you came home and now everything’s all right!” and he turned that frown into a huge smile. Perhaps he just heard the intonation of my voice, or he was frowning for a completely unrelated reason, but it sure was cute so I just had to share.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

I’ve noticed that Elijah looks at his hand once in awhile. He hasn’t done it very much, but I can’t wait until he is fascinated by his own hands. That’ll be fun. Hope you are all doing well.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Elijah had a play date today with his good pal Aubrey. They were both more awake this time, which was nice. They didn’t really seem to notice each other much, but did glance in the other’s direction if the other was crying. (I wonder if they can understand each other…I wish Aubrey would translate for me and tell me what Elijah was saying!:)) Even if Elijah and Aubrey weren’t too interested in playing, Aubrey’s mom, Ann, and I sure did have a nice time chatting. It was a lovely day and it was really nice to have the company.
I was watching the news tonight and there were a lot of men who had committed robberies. I have a different perspective on these sort of things because I find myself wondering “Who are these men’s mothers?!” Of course, I know that it isn’t their mom’s fault. Eventually we all have to grow up and take responsibility for our own actions. Anyway, I just thought it was funny that I was thinking about the criminal’s mothers, because I certainly wouldn’t have been thinking about that in the past. I just hope I can be a good mommy to Elijah and he never grows up and wants to steal anything. :)
Elijah is three months (12 weeks) old tonight at 10:58! Those three months sure did go by fast and I can’t believe how big he’s getting! Also, we’ve dropped his Phenobarb dosage to 1 cc two times a day. That’s half of what he was on for the last two weeks. Two more weeks and he’ll be done with the drug completely! Yay!
New pictures are on Photobucket! Check them out.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Elijah is a flirt. At least the Early Intervention ladies seem to think so. He does like to ham it up. He’ll smile and bat his eyelashes or smirk and look at you out of the corner of his eye. He loves attention and seems to like to show off. I’ve been known to call him a flirt at times too.
It was kind of neat to have a caravan of people come to visit Elijah. We had five ladies at our house and all of them were here just to see Elijah – he sure is an important guy. :) We discussed the results of the Bayley Scale of Infant Development and plans for the future. We discussed the next things Elijah should be doing, such as rolling over (on a more consistent basis), purposely grabbing things, sitting up on his own, etc. We’ll be visited once a month until he’s about 6 months old – when more will be expected from him – and then we’ll be visited about once a week. We’ll start with a visit by the occupational therapist and teacher next week Thursday. It’s exciting to have so many people looking out for Elijah and making sure he is developing like he should. I believe he is going to be an amazing man someday. He’s already an amazing baby. :)

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Elijah was visited by Grandpa Dennis today. Perhaps grandpa was visiting us too. :) Grandpa burned a whole bunch of brush in the backyard and it looks a lot nicer back there now. Daddy did some raking. Elijah wanted to help, but he had to stay inside and keep his mommy company. Overall, it was a lovely day.
Well, I think that we are going to take advantage of the time change and go to bed early. Goodnight!

Friday, November 2, 2007

This morning I gave Elijah a bottle (we give him his Phenobarbital two times a day mixed with a little milk) and he put both hands on the bottle. He wasn’t holding it up on his own, but it was really cute and good practice for when he will be able to hold it on his own. He keeps on learning new things! He didn’t do it tonight for his daddy, though.
Elijah and I went to the grocery store today – just the two of us. That was the first time we’ve gone alone and Elijah behaved very well. I’m slowly getting used to taking him out alone. Sometimes I feel like such a weakling since he’s so heavy and it is hard being out in public since I can’t sit down and rest. I still get achy from my surgery at times when I overdo it, which is really annoying. The more outings, the easier it’ll get.
Uncle Andy visited tonight. We had yummy homemade pizza and Elijah enjoyed hanging out with his uncle. We had a really nice evening.
Elijah has been a lot fussier lately. He usually is such a content baby, so it’s weird when he’s not. I remind myself that he’s normal. Babies get fussy and it’s a blessing that he’s acting like any other baby would. The three of us should get to bed. Goodnight!

Thursday, November 1, 2007

I watched an episode of Scrubs tonight while Elijah was napping (I know you’ll be proud Dan!). It kind of hit home for me since JD was becoming a dad and it highlighted what parents will do for their kids. One of the doctors said something that I really related to. He said, “Statistics mean nothing to the individual.” How true that is! It doesn’t matter what happens with the majority of cases; what matters is what happens with Elijah. I have to remember he is already proving statistics wrong and he will continue to do so. He has God on his side and with God he can’t go wrong.
In other news, we got the Bayley Scales of Infant Development report today. This is the test that Early Intervention did a couple weeks ago. The report showed that he is developing normally for his age. That is great news! We already knew he had done well because we were there for the test, but it’s nice to see it written down. We will be having a meeting with the E.I. people this Monday at our house to discuss the results and the plan for moving forward with Elijah. We’ll let you know how it goes.
Hope you are all doing well. Thanks once again for all of the prayers, the thoughts, and the notes. We really appreciate you all sharing your stories and thoughts with us. We don’t know what we would do without all of the support we’ve received from all of you. Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

I’m so tired of worrying. Most days I wake up and feel just like any other parent – with all of the normal worries that parenting entails. It feels like Elijah’s first three weeks were just a horrible nightmare and we woke up to a warm and cozy home with a beautiful baby boy. It feels like God took the eraser on the dry erase board and wiped it all away. That’s how I feel most of the time.
And then sometimes I’m reminded that we’re not in the clear yet and I keep worrying. I’ll get a pang in my side and remember that I’m still recovering from my surgery. Elijah will do something that I think might not be “normal” and I start my cycle of worry again. I just don’t want to worry anymore.
As you know, we went to the doctor this morning. Elijah is doing well and he now weighs…drum roll please…15 lbs. 13 oz. Andy had weighed Elijah this week on our scale and we were way off – we were telling people at church that he weighs 17 lbs. Whoops! He’s still growing at a great rate and is really healthy. He’s in the 90-95 weight percentile for his age.
So, why then am I worrying? - Elijah’s head circumference isn’t growing; in fact it seemed to have shrunk since our last visit. Typically heads don’t shrink and we can’t remember if they measured his head differently at our last visit –which might make the number a bit inaccurate. Nevertheless, his head doesn’t seem to be increasing in size like it should be. This means that his brain might not be growing as it should and that means all sorts of things in terms of his development. His head size is in the 5-10 percentile, which kind of freaks me out.
I remind myself that Elijah is doing really well and is meeting all of his developmental milestones, which is the important thing. I can’t help, though, to picture my son walking around with a large body and a small head and what a horrible image that is. Right now, I have to remember once again to watch my son and not look at numbers. So far, the numbers haven’t done me any good. The numbers said he wouldn’t be doing any of the things he’s doing now. He doesn’t look unusual to me at all. He looks like a perfectly healthy 11 week old and I remind myself that God is looking out for us.
I would love to be able to make Elijah grow on my own, but I simply can’t. That’s what’s so hard – we want to fix things, but we simply can’t. It’s another reminder to put things into God’s hands and go from there. We must focus on the positive and ask God for help. Please pray for Elijah’s brain to grow and develop. We’ll stop worrying about it and watch our little boy grow and amaze us.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

I had a coupon, so Andy, Elijah and I went to Babies R Us tonight. It’s always fun to go on an outing all together. Granted, shopping isn’t Andy’s favorite pastime, but he still enjoys being with us.
Andy and I haven’t been in Maple Grove since Elijah came into this world. It brought back memories of our carefree pre-baby days when we used to live in our apartment. We can hardly even remember what our lives were like before we had Elijah and don’t really want to. This world is a much brighter place with Elijah in it.
We might’ve stopped at Cold Stone on the way home. It was probably really yummy, but I’m not going to admit anything. J
Well, we’d better get into bed. Elijah has a doctor appointment tomorrow morning. I’m curious to see how much he’ll weigh this time. I’ll tell you in my next update. Goodnight!

Monday, October 29, 2007

Our little family had a really great day yesterday. Elijah and I were showered with love because “auntie” Heidi threw us a Welcome Baby Tea. Elijah got lots of cuddling and I got to have a lot of great adult conversation with the ladies from church (most of my conversations these days consist of goo-goo ga-gaJ). We had a great time and were so exhausted we went to bed before I got a chance to write an update. Thanks ladies! It was a lovely afternoon.
Today we talked to a lady who has dealt with a lot of children who have had rough starts. She looked at Elijah’s MRI and was amazed at how well Elijah is doing. In 26 years she’s never seen a child who had as rough a start as Elijah do this well. (Most children aren’t able to suck and swallow – to give you an idea). Once again, I am reminded of what God can do and again, we feel so blessed. I like to forget how bad it was, but when I hear things like that, I remember once again what a miracle Elijah is. I like to share because there is no explanation for Elijah’s recovery other than God’s intervention.
According to science, there was a good possibility Elijah would be a vegetable. That’s why “Dr. Gloom” was so, well, gloomy. He had reason to believe our child wouldn’t do so well, because almost all children don’t do well at all. For me to expect a full recovery is nothing short of a miracle. I remember telling nurses in the hospital that I believed Elijah would be completely fine. They would listen to me and be silent. I think they would’ve liked to say, “Yeah, he’ll be fine!” but they had seen too many kids to give me that reassurance. Thankfully, God has so gracefully listened and held our hands through all of this. We couldn’t have done it without Him and I hope I never forget to thank God for giving Elijah to us – not once, but twice!

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Do you ever feel incredibly blessed? I do and I’m having one of those moments where I can’t believe how great my life is.
If I could, would I go back and change what happened in Elijah’s birth? Of course I would. Would I change how it has affected me, how I’ve grown, how much more I appreciate life, family and friends? Never in a million years. And that is how God is so great. He always pulls through on His promises and He works things out for good. (There I go again on my favorite scripture – Rom. 8:28)
I know I’ve learned a lot through this whole experience and we’ve had so many people tell us that Elijah’s story has affected them too. What a blessing that is! Have you learned something through reading about Elijah’s amazing recovery? We’d love to hear it!

Friday, October 26, 2007

Uncle Andy visited tonight. It was nice. We’re tired. Goodnight. :)

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Where do all the days go? Every week there is inevitably a day when I think that it’s a day earlier than it really is. So then I ask myself, “It’s not really Thursday is it?” I’m sure I’m not the only one who has experienced this. What did I do with all of that time I had BE (Before Elijah)?
Andy and I went for a walk tonight. Elijah was sleeping in his stroller and it was a beautiful night for a stroll. Andy and I were able to chat about things unrelated to parenthood and that was a nice treat. I couldn’t have asked for a better evening as a family.
For those of you who have photo withdrawal, I’ve uploaded more pictures onto Photobucket and a few videos too. Enjoy! :)

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Sometimes I find myself wanting to fast-forward into the future and see what lies ahead. If only I could glimpse and make sure that Elijah is all right, that he is completely healed. Then I realize that I’m wishing his life away and I need to make sure to enjoy him while he’s this young. From what I hear, they grow up fast and I shouldn’t be wishing it to be any faster than it already is.
Not too long from now I’m sure Elijah won’t want to cuddle with me so much. I can hear him now. “Mooomm, don’t. I’m too big for kisses.” “Moomm, I’ve heard the story a million times. I know that I’m a miracle. Can I go outside and play now?” It puts a smile on my face to think that I may annoy him someday and I’m sure I will at some point. That thought makes me happy because it’s just so…normal.
I try to remind myself that I need to have the faith that God has finished the job. Do I have any reason not to believe so? Everything that I asked to be prayed for has happened. In the early days it was a gag reflex and crying. Now it’s a good result on the EEG, with so many answered prayers in-between. If Elijah’s life doesn’t strengthen your faith, I don’t know what would.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Great news! The EEG came back normal. What does that mean exactly? I don’t really know, just as I didn’t know what an abnormal EEG meant. Normal and abnormal are such abstract words. Who is really “normal”? Certainly not me. J
What I do know is that the EEG is a snapshot in time. This means that during the hour the test occurred, Elijah didn’t have any seizures and apparently everything looked normal. From what I’ve read, a normal EEG doesn’t necessarily mean there are no problems. It is obviously better than an abnormal EEG and I take it to be a really good sign. Finally the tests are starting to correlate with the little boy we see in front of us.
As a result of the good EEG, we are now weaning Elijah off of the Phenobarbital. He will still be on it for the next month, but in gradually smaller doses. This makes us really happy. God has been really good to us and we feel so blessed. Elijah is truly a miracle.

Monday, October 22, 2007

No news yet regarding the EEG. Apparently the neurologist has not yet reviewed the test, even though Andy has now called the clinic twice. We’re running low on Elijah’s medicine and it seems silly to buy more just to wean him off of it. I’m a bit annoyed. Tomorrow it’ll already be a week since he had the test done. We think it’s important to get him off of the Phenobarb as soon as possible and it feels like we’re just wasting time. Oh well, there’s nothing we can do and hopefully we’ll get the results tomorrow.
I took Elijah on a walk today. It was the first walk with just the two of us and he fussed the whole time. I ended up carrying him most of the way and pushing the stroller at the same time. It’s amazing what you can carry all at once when you have a baby…well, at least try to carry.
Anyway, hope you’re all doing well on this Monday. Hopefully I’ll have good news about the EEG tomorrow.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

What would you do without faith?
It’s a question I ask myself a lot because I honestly don’t know what we would have done without our faith. We might have curled up into a little ball and never emerged. We would’ve believed the doctors when they told us Elijah might not breathe, that he might have cerebral palsy, that there would definitely be something wrong with him. I know that nothing is certain and that Elijah may still have some difficulties in his life. Honestly, we won’t really know until he grows up what the repercussions of his birth are. But with every day that passes, he proves the doctors wrong. To me, every day he proves that there is absolutely nothing wrong with him.
Elijah is certainly a faith builder all on his own. How many two and half month old kids have accomplished what he has? I feel so inspired by him to make something of myself, to live each day to the fullest, to be the best mother I can be. (Believe me, sometimes I already forget how blessed I really am and I have to remind myself).
The comforting thing has always been that eventually Elijah would be okay; if not in this life, then in the next one. God can make anyone whole and while that is of course what we would all want, sometimes God has a plan that we don’t completely understand. Our lives are just a blink in time to Him after all and sometimes it’s impossible for us to step back and look at the big picture. We can try to understand it, but at times it’s so hard to wrap our minds around the enormity of it all…that for God there is no beginning or end. He is and always has been. But even despite our insignificance in relation to the universe, God cares about each and every one of us and what a blessing that is!
Elijah has been fussy tonight. I just fed him and we’re going to bed. We love this guy! Goodnight. :)

Friday, October 19, 2007

Today Elijah and I had visitors. My good friends Beth and Jill came by for a visit. Elijah and I enjoyed the company. Uncle Andy came by later for dinner and we all had pizza together. It was really fun to have friends and family to laugh with. I feel so blessed to have so many great people in my life. That includes all of you who read this journal…I feel so blessed that people are still interested in this amazing little man’s life. He inspires me every day and I hope he does the same for all of you.
Well, it was a bit of a fluke…the bath that is. Tonight Elijah enjoyed his bath, but was upset afterwards and started crying at the top of his lungs. (Apparently he didn’t think we got him dressed fast enough). It’s so hard to hear him cry and we do whatever we can to make him stop. It is also such a beautiful sound since we had to wait two weeks to hear it and since he really doesn’t do it that often.
I’ve worried before that he is too happy of a baby. A crazy thing to worry about, I know! J With what Elijah has been through, I find all sorts of things to worry about. But, the thing is, I don’t think I need to worry about him being a content baby. I definitely see a personality in him and he has a sense of humor shining through in his eyes. He can definitely get mad; I’ve seen it! He yells so loud that his face gets all red and he starts to cough a little because he’s crying so loud. That’s what he was doing tonight after his bath.
We took the sling out of his tub because he is simply getting too big for it and Elijah wasn’t too sure about this new experience. Now, instead of floating contently in the water in his little hammock, he had to get used to the new feeling of balancing himself in the water. He put his hands up in the air and wanted to hold our hands to steady him. (Who knew you could talk so much about taking a bath?! Parents and their obsession with their children, I tell ya!) Goodnight everyone and thanks again for your continued thoughts and prayers. It means more to me than I can express.
(Hey Beth and Jill, you guys made it into the journal! No video for you…but here’s a shout out to Jen! :))

Thursday, October 18, 2007

There’s nothing quite like being a mom. And people were right - we didn’t really understand this whole parenthood thing until it happened. How you’d do anything for him, love him, and sacrifice parts of yourself just to make him happy. You can’t really understand that until it happens.
Each day I fall a little more in love with this little man. It really is hard not to. He’s starting to look and coo at me, which is so special. He’s rambunctious most of the time, but once in awhile he’ll be falling asleep and he’ll just snuggle into me and make these sweet little noises. It’s so wonderful and I am in awe of this little creation from God. And so thankful that He let me borrow Elijah – because he really belongs to God after all. When you look at it that way – that Elijah is on loan from God – it’s so humbling because I know that God would do a better job. Then I remember that the whole point of this life is to be learning and growing and that goes for both Elijah and I. I think I’m learning and growing just as much as Elijah (although it’s hopefully not as obvious because I haven’t almost doubled my weight!:))
Anyway, we’re all doing great and hope this finds you all well.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Every day Elijah is becoming less of a tiny newborn and more of a big boy. He is holding his head up for long periods of time and for the last couple of days he’s been supporting his weight when I hold him on his legs. He continues to get stronger and continues to amaze me.
Last night was a new development because he didn’t enjoy his bath. The moment I started to lay him in the water, he grabbed onto the hair on the top of my head and held on for dear life. I was afraid I had made the water too warm, (I’ve been known to do so) but after checking it a few more times, determined the temp was fine. He cried through the whole thing and so his bath was extremely quick. Once he was dressed back in his PJs he was fine. He just didn’t want to take a bath last night; his cry sounded afraid and that he didn’t like it. Each day his personality blossoms and he tells us his likes and dislikes more and more. I hope he will still like his baths and last night was just a fluke!
Another thing he did last night was he grabbed my ear and took my earring out. Little stinker. J I guess no more little earrings for me since I don’t want to risk him swallowing one of them.
We’ve recently received the medical records for Elijah and me pertaining to his birth (upon our request). Reading them, I am again amazed at this little man and the miracle he is. It’s hard to read them and relive it all over again and it makes me so sad that my poor little guy had to go through so much. It also makes me so glad to have him in our lives. He is such an inspiration. He’s been through a whole lot and even with all that, he’s a happy little guy. He’s got a great little personality and I can’t wait to continue getting to know him ever better.
(By the way, the neurologist won't review his EEG until Monday, so we don't know until then. Annoying, but that's the way it goes)

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Elijah looked like a character from a science fiction novel this morning. Several electrodes were placed on his head while I held him. Then he looked like he was wearing a turban. His head was wrapped up so he wouldn’t tear the electrodes off. Needless to say, Elijah looked quite silly for his EEG and he behaved very well. He slept through most of the test, but he was awake some so the test would have good awake/sleep cycles.
We won’t know the results until the neurologist reviews the test, but the technician said she didn’t see anything strange. That’s good enough for me right now and hopefully the doctor will say the same thing. If he determines that Elijah still isn’t having seizures, we can start weaning him off of Phenobarbital. We’ll let you know when we find out.
This afternoon/evening we got to meet Andy’s nice co-worker Ann and her cute little girl Aubrey. Elijah and Aubrey are kindred spirits since they’ve both spent time in the NICU (Aubrey surprised her mommy and daddy by arriving four and a half weeks early). I can tell that Elijah and Aubrey are going to be great friends!
Well, that’s all I have to report for today. Hope you are all enjoying the fall weather and having a great week! Elijah is going to go take a bath and go to bed. Sweet dreams everyone!

Monday, October 15, 2007

Elijah saw his pediatrician this morning and we have nothing but good news to report. His muscle tone is improving and the doctor seemed very pleased by this. He thought it was normal now, but still a teeny bit slack on his belly. It has improved, which is what really matters. The pediatrician was extremely positive. He mentioned that Elijah is not out of the woods yet, but he is growing and developing like he should be at this point which of course is a good sign. I think he even said “congratulations guys” when we left today and he seemed so happy to see that he is growing and that he is hitting the second month milestones.
Speaking of growing, Elijah is huge. Andy and I guessed what his weight was before they called us in and we were way off. Andy guessed 13 lbs 1 oz and I guessed 13 lbs 3 oz. What’s your guess? J He’s 14 lbs 6 oz! He’s in the 95th percentile for his age. No wonder our backs hurt sometimes! His head is growing too, which is also a really good thing. His sutures are starting to fill in and in my opinion, he gets cuter every day.
The Early Intervention ladies were here this afternoon and that also went really well. It was fun to watch them perform the test to see if he is doing certain things. It starts out easy and then keeps getting harder until he can’t do the things because he is too young. Elijah did well and they seemed pleased. He got tired near the middle of the test, so he stopped performing. We’ll get a report next week about how he did. They warned me that the test may say he is not able to do things that he really is able to do since the test is just a snapshot in time. Since he got sleepy near the end, it’ll show that he was unable to do those things. The ladies said that they could come every week, but didn’t see a need to do so at this point. He’s still so young and isn’t showing any signs that he needs the extra help. They said we were doing a good job and to keep interacting and stimulating him as much as possible. They’ll visit once a month and then perform another test when he is six months old.
Tomorrow morning Elijah will be having an EEG (a test that measures his brain activity by electrodes attached to his head). We want to start weaning him off of Phenobarbital and the neurologist wanted to make sure that Elijah isn’t having any seizures before they take him off of the drug. We of course do not want him to have any more seizures, but Phenobarb is pretty harsh and we don’t want him to be on it any longer if possible.
His last EEG was when he was seven days old. He was not having any seizures at the time, but it was abnormal (whatever that means!) Tonight we could use prayers that the EEG shows us some good news…that he is still not having any seizures and that his brain is processing information normally. Well, this little man is squirming around on my chest as I write this and I need to try to get him to go to sleep. Okay, now he’s getting mad, so goodnight!
As I said last night, Elijah had a big day yesterday with a lot of firsts. Have I kept you in suspense enough? :)
First, we went to church in the morning. Following the example of Christ when He took up small children in His arms and blessed them (Matt. 19:13-15), Elijah was blessed. A special prayer was said for him as we prayed for his protection, physically and spiritually, throughout his life. Both sets of his grandparents were there to witness the event and pray for him with the congregation. It was really special.
After church, Elijah got to go out to eat with both sets of grandparents, his aunt Darlene and uncle Dan, his “other grandparents” Tom and Marlene (they’ve been like a second set of parents to me since I’ve been friends with their daughter, “auntie” Heidi, since we were in our mother’s wombs :)), and of course his parents. Elijah let his mommy eat and when he saw that we were all finished, he decided he wanted to eat too. He’s so well behaved. :)
Then, after lunch was another first for Elijah…his first wedding! Elijah got to meet daddy’s cool friends at Bobbi and Nick’s wedding. He was kind of fussing through the ceremony, so both Andy and I had to miss parts of the wedding so that he wouldn’t disrupt the service. Then he got to go to the reception where he was held by Karen, Joel, and the lucky guy even got held by the bride. I was afraid that he would spit-up on Bobbi’s gorgeous dress, but he thankfully didn’t. Eventually Elijah decided that the dance was too noisy and he wanted to go home. The three of us had a really great time and it was nice to see everyone again. Thanks for a great time and congrats Bobbi and Nick!
On the way home from the dance, we discovered that there was a famous Wagner bonfire taking place and that we were missing it. Elijah’s aunts and uncles and his grandparents on both sides of the family were partying without us! So we headed over to grandpa and grandma Wagner’s house for another first for Elijah…his first bonfire! We wrapped him all up in his car seat and he seemed to really enjoy himself by the fire. He also seemed to enjoy all of the people around him staring at him. He got to meet his great-uncle David and his great-aunt Wendy (Lausted). He wasn’t by the fire for long before he decided he was hungry, so he had to go inside to eat before his “greats” got to hold him. Elijah will just have to anxiously wait until the next time.
We’re home now. Elijah got to spend time with his family today, which was nice. He hung out with his aunties Jamie and Casey and he got to see his “auntie” Shae and “uncle” Ross for the first time since the hospital and they both got to hold him. He loved it. When we got home tonight, Elijah got a visit from his great-uncle Dave and great-aunt Holly (Wagner). He sure has met a lot of people this weekend. I hope he’s taking notes because I’m going to be quizzing him later! J
Well, we’re exhausted and I’m sure Elijah is too. He had a busy weekend and tomorrow will be busy too. He has a doctor’s appointment in the morning and Early Intervention is coming in the afternoon. Hopefully I’ll have some good news to report tomorrow night.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Elijah had a big day with lots of firsts. It’s late and we just got Elijah to sleep, so that’s what we’ll be doing now too. An update will have to wait until tomorrow (today- since it’s after midnight). zzzzzzzzzzzz

Friday, October 12, 2007

Elijah, Andy, and I made another trip tonight. Over the river and through the woods to the grandparent’s house we went. We’re at my parent’s house tonight and will be seeing both sets of grandparents this weekend. Elijah will be getting lots of hugs and kisses! (We’re so blessed!) Well, I suppose I should be getting to bed soon. Elijah has been doing fantastically well sleeping through the night most of the time. We feel so blessed, but I wonder if this will change when he is taken off of Phenobarbital. Anyway, we’re enjoying it while it lasts and trying to get our rest.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

It’s been a lazy day at home for Elijah and me. We really do have a lot of fun together. It’s great to watch him grow every day and it’s amazing how much he has grown already. I don’t notice as much since I see him every day, but when I look at pictures I realize how big he has gotten since he’s been home. It really is amazing and I can’t wait to watch him grow even more.
Andy, Elijah and I went to Target tonight. It’s fun to go out together, even if it is just a few minutes. Elijah gets a lot of positive attention as everyone says how cute he is. One woman said Elijah looked just like Andy. That was nice since a lot of people have said he looks like me. It’s so wonderful that we can go out and forget anything ever happened to Elijah. The same woman commented that he must’ve been a big baby. I told her that he was 9 lbs. 3 oz. and she said, “Ouch!” I just nodded and smiled and thought to myself, “Lady, you have no idea!” My point is that it’s so great that we can go places and not have anyone know that Elijah spent almost half of his life so far in the hospital. The horrible memory of a hospital is really starting to fade and I’m so grateful.
Not too long ago I saw a pregnant woman and I mentioned it to Andy with a smile in my voice, “Hey, that lady’s preggers!” Andy said, “So, you’re not mad at pregnant women anymore?” There was a time when it was really painful for me to see pregnant women or people pushing strollers. The pregnant women because I wanted to go back in time and start all over again and the strollers because it seemed I would never get to push Elijah in one. Not that I was ever mad at anyone, it’s just that it was painful and I guess my point is that the pain is subsiding and turning into joy. It was a lot of pain, so you can imagine how much joy that is. Life is good!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Andy is getting Elijah in his pajamas, so I’ll have to be quick. Hopefully we can get Elijah to sleep fairly soon and get a good night’s rest.
We had a really nice day with family today. Elijah’s great-grandma Joyce, his grandpa John, and his grandma Teri were here visiting for the day. The day was relaxing and Elijah enjoyed himself because he was kissed and loved and snuggled all day long. He’s a lucky boy all right! It really was a lovely day.
Well, that’s all the time I have for an update tonight.
(Elijah says: “Huff, huff, grunt grunt, waah!” Translation - “Dear grandma Kathy, I hope you had a great birthday!!” Love, Elijah)

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

This morning we had the Early Intervention people visit. Three people were here: a facilitator, a teacher, and an occupational therapist. They were all very nice and the visit went well. Elijah of course is a wonderful little boy and they all kept saying how cute he is. They all seemed pleased at how well Elijah is doing and I hope that they’re excited to work with him. Today was just the initial meeting and we mostly just talked. They got to see Elijah awake a little bit (he’s usually sleeping at the time they visited). He looked at them when they talked, so they got to see how well he is doing.
We have another appointment for this Monday. They will be performing a test called the Bayley Scales of Infant Development. It’s a standardized test that looks at cognition, language, and fine motor skills. It will be a starting point to help track Elijah’s development. I think it’ll help to make sure he is meeting the milestones a boy his age is supposed to be meeting.
The ladies wanted a brief history of Elijah’s birth and when we told them they were really sympathetic and I think surprised by the boy that was in front of them. The facilitator had mentioned that when the Public Health Nurse called, she was really excited about Elijah, so I’m sure they already knew that Elijah was doing well. It was nice to hear again, though, that the nurse was excited by him. I could tell she was impressed by Elijah when she was here, but it’s nice to hear that she was sharing her excitement with the facilitator.
The services provided by Early Intervention are “free” (provided by the state) if you qualify. To qualify, a child should be showing some kind of developmental delay. The qualification in Minnesota has changed recently to include children who have had a risky start in life. The good news is that right now Elijah is developing like he should and wouldn’t have qualified in the past. He is doing so well and God is so good to us!

Sunday, October 7, 2007

It’s hard to get anything done. It’s nice to have Andy around all day on the weekend, but even with him around it’s hard to accomplish anything. There is so much to do around the house and it feels like we’ve only made a dent in it. Oh well, things just have to wait, don’t they? J There’s a little boy to be taken care of and he trumps everything else. And it’s a joy to take care of him, even if it means our house looks a little messy.
My sweet husband is doing the grocery shopping for me this evening so that we’ll have food this week. I honestly don’t know what I would do without him. Elijah is taking a nap and I need to get some things done. I’ve managed to do most of the laundry and the dishes today. Andy mowed the lawn and changed the oil in our car. The two of us make a pretty good tag team with Elijah. I’ve got to go get some things done, so I’d better stop writing and get going. Hope you are all doing well and thanks again for everything!

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Should I start up the nightly ritual of journals again? I might try, but Elijah keeps us quite busy. It’s a good thing. J I so enjoy writing about him and I’m glad that you all enjoy reading about him.
Andy is holding Elijah right now. They’re so cute together. Elijah has been fussing a lot tonight and it’s one of those times when you ask yourself, “What’s bothering him?” He’s falling asleep now and he must’ve just been tired. Well, that’s all I have to write for now…two updates in one day! (I spoke too soon…he’s awake againJ…got to go!)
New photos on our photobucket site. You can also find a link to our photobucket site by clicking on "links" above***
We made it home safely and we had a wonderful time in the Dells. It was great to be together as a family for a whole week. We learned a lot about trials during the Feast and it really hit home. I don’t think I really understood trials before. I tried to understand, but you can’t really get it if you’ve never had something like this happen to you. We were so happy to be able to go to the Dells since just a few short weeks ago, we weren’t sure if we were going to be able to make it. I actually started to cry tears of joy during one of the hymns at church because I was so happy to be there and so happy for God’s blessings.
I have to admit, though, it is nice to be home again and start to relax. We got home late last night and it was great to sleep in our own bed. Elijah even seems to be relaxing more. He was awake for most of his car ride home yesterday, which really surprised me. He didn’t even fuss very much; he was just excited and looking around. I have noticed that when he is experiencing something new or a new place he doesn’t want to sleep. He seems to be soaking everything in and it’s so fun to watch. Part of our trip home was in the dark and I thought for sure he would be snoozing the whole time, but not Elijah! He had too many things to be looking at to waste time sleeping. He seemed to enjoy all of the lights that the cars and street lamps made. I realized that he had never ridden in a car at night and so it was a new experience for him and he didn’t want to miss it.
The great news is that since he was awake for so much yesterday, he slept through the night last night. He went for seven hours without eating and gave his mom and dad a chance to get some sleep. He’s taking a nap right now and so I have a chance to write this journal. Life sure is great with our little boy. He is an incredible blessing and we are so happy to have him with us.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

We are having a lot of fun in the Dells. Elijah is just thriving. He loves being out and about and seems to be learning more and more each day. (I’m afraid that he’ll be bored at home when he’s just with mommy!) He has gotten pretty good at holding up his head while being held on our shoulder (or on his tummy) and he likes to look around.
Life is good. Elijah is a pretty happy baby. He is such a joy and everyone loves him. He really is a miracle and God sure has blessed us. I’m sure I have more things to report, but my brain seems a little fuzzy. I am still pretty tired, but my joy meter is full and I’m running on that. Elijah is fussing, so I’d better take care of him. :) What a privilege.
(Oh, and Pa Wagner…I’m uploading some photos after I post this. It’ll take a bit since this internet connection is slooow, but that should help with your photo withdrawal problem:))

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Elijah wanted to let everyone know that he is doing really well. He is having a really good time in the Dells and is learning a lot. He seems to have gotten bigger even in the last few days. He’s a growing, curious, fantastic, wonderful boy.
Andy was having Elijah do some tummy time today and he seems to be trying to learn how to move across the floor. He is just doing so well and we’re of course so proud of him. I think he’s going to be a very strong man someday.
Anyway, that’s all the time I have to write. I hope this finds you all well.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Andy and I have big heads. No, we don’t think we’re the greatest things on earth, but when we give each other a hug or a kiss we think that we are giants. We’re both so used to snuggling with Elijah that our heads seem huge. I just thought that was kind of funny.
Today Elijah got to go shopping with his mommy, his grandma, and his “grand” (great) auntie Peggy. He did really well and didn’t start to fuss until right before we were going to go home. He is such a great little boy and I’m so glad that he does so well out in public. I’m still trying to get used to being a mommy. I have only had him home for three weeks after all. I figure the more he is out, the better. He likes to look around at everything and I’m sure this is good for brain stimulation. (Daddy went on a hike with family. Elijah wanted to go with too, but I told him he had to wait until he can hold his head up on his own).
Elijah needs a diaper change…so talk to you later.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Another fabulous day with a fabulous boy… Elijah got to go to church today and meet a lot of people. He does really well in a crowd and soaks in all of the attention. He liked the music at church and woke up when he heard it. He’s generally a happy guy and doesn’t fuss for us too much when he’s out and about. He doesn’t seem to mind that he’s not at home. It’s me that is getting used to all of this new stuff…getting used to things taking twice as long, having to take so much stuff when you leave the house, feeding him in public, being tired, etc. etc. There’s a lot to get used to when you’re a new mom. I never knew how much time I had before I had a baby!
Elijah went to a restaurant for the first time tonight. He did really well. He was awake and alert at first and was looking around at everything. He liked the light fixture above the table and stared at that a lot. He got fussy a little, but Grandma Lausted got him to go to sleep and he slept through the meal. We all ate and enjoyed ourselves. Then, right on cue, Elijah starting fussing when we got the bill. Elijah was just jealous that we were all eating and he wanted to eat too. We were very close to where we were staying, so we headed home and he ate again. He was a good boy for another first: eating out!
Well, I’m tired. Elijah is doing well and that’s all that really matters. Life is good.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

I missed a night. Did you notice? J Andy and I were busy packing for our trip to the Wisconsin Dells last night. (For those of you who don’t know, we celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles. It’s talked about in Lev. 23 and it pictures a time when Christ will rule – something to look forward to!)
We made it to the Dells safe and sound and Elijah did very well for his first trip away from home. He really seems to be a curious baby. He likes to look around and check out what is going on and seems to notice when he is somewhere he hasn’t been before. He gets hard to handle because he’s trying to check everything out and he squirms around. He’s so cute.
We got to visit with Grandpa and Grandma Wagner on the way here. Elijah was glad to see them and so were we. Elijah was giving Grandpa John some legit smiles…and then later proceeded to cry. Babies are so funny like that…happy one moment and upset the next. Sometimes Elijah is hard to figure out. We’re here in the Dells with Grandpa and Grandma Lausted and Uncle Dan and Aunt Darlene. Elijah will get to meet some more family tomorrow and he confided in me that he’s a bit excited about it. He really does seem to like people and I’m so glad. It’s fun to see him study faces. I can tell he’s going to be smart.
Well, I suppose that’s all for now. I’m sure I will have some fun stories to report this week for Elijah’s first time away from home. But, don’t be surprised if I miss a few nights as I’m sure this week will wear me out a little. I’m still getting used to being a mom and it’s hard enough when I’m home all day and don’t take Elijah out and about. I hope you all have a great night!

Monday, September 24, 2007

It is such a joy to be a mom. I can’t even describe it. Sure, I get frustrated and overwhelmed at times, but it is definitely worth it. And there is the worrying too, of course, but mostly these days it’s just the enjoying. It’s so wonderful to be at this place…mostly just worrying about the things all parents worry about and watching our little boy grow and develop more and more each day. I just know he is going to do great things.
This morning Elijah and I found ourselves alone again as the weekend is over and Andy is off at work. We decided it was a good time to do some reading. I read a few books to Elijah and he really seemed to enjoy it. He sat very still for me and seemed to be listening. He was even smiling at times, which I think were legitimate smiles. He is such a smart boy. I think I got through three books before he started to fuss and fell right asleep. It was such a nice moment and it’s moments like these that make your life worth living.
This evening Andy and I took Elijah to the pediatrician for his second appointment. The visit went well. He now weighs 11 lbs. 13 oz. (which is good). The doctor couldn’t see any foreseeable problems. He said that the cup is half full and there is no reason not to be optimistic. Elijah’s muscle tone is still a little slack on his tummy, but the doctor didn’t seem to think it was anything to be concerned about (I guess more tummy time for Elijah!). At this point, I don’t think he looks different from other newborns. That’s good if you ask me, sine he’s not showing any of the signs for things like cerebral palsy. That doesn’t necessarily mean he couldn’t show the signs in the future, but I still believe that my boy is going to be completely fine. The doctor was glad to see that Elijah is opening his hands. I’ve been a little worried lately about Elijah abducting his thumbs, which he has always done. He doesn’t do it as much as he used to, but I was still concerned about it. I mentioned it to the doctor, but he was just glad that he was opening his hands at all. I think it’s normal for newborns to hold their thumbs in; it’s just that Elijah was so conked out in the hospital that he did it constantly and they were concerned his joints would freeze up. Anyway, everything looks good.
Andy heard that I read to Elijah and he wants to read to him too. Elijah is going to be so smart! Time for Andy to read to Elijah and go to bed. Thanks everyone and goodnight!
It’s much too late to still be awake, so this is going to be short. We had a great day and even took Elijah out shopping. He enjoys being out and about. Some ladies commented on how cute he was and made the comment that he was “bright” for a five week old. Elijah liked that. :) Okay, so did his mommy. Anyway, I need to sleep! Sleep deprivation…that’s what we signed up for, right? :)

Sunday, September 23, 2007

What a wonderful day!
If you’ve read the guestbook, you’ve probably already discovered that it is my birthday today. My entrance into this world was complicated. I’ve thought at times in my life that I am lucky to be here since the umbilical cord was wrapped around my neck twice. I was blue and not breathing and my poor mom ended up losing a lot of blood in the process. Thankfully, everything turned out all right. After Elijah’s ordeal, I wondered if I could have suffered from a brain injury. MRIs didn’t exist in those days, so they wouldn’t have known. I did have some oxygen deprivation and I kind of wonder what they would have said if I had been born now. Would they have given my parents a grim prognosis? All I know is that I wouldn’t mind being called brain damaged if that’s the title they want to give Elijah. I’d be honored.
Elijah made his official debut at church today and he did really well. He soaked it all in and seemed to really love it. He seems to like people. He wants to study faces and see what is going on in the world around him. He’s famous because of his website and everyone was so glad to meet him. It was really nice for us to be at church again too. Thanks to everyone for giving us such a warm welcome back. We are so thankful for our wonderful church family and feel so blessed to have you all in our lives. Thanks again for all the prayers and all the love you have showered us with. It has really meant a lot to us.
Tonight we had a house full of family and what a happy, joyful time it was. We had both sets of grandparents, Aunt Casey, Uncle Andy, Uncle Dan, and Aunt Darlene. We had dinner all together for my birthday. (I have a sneaking suspicion that the family was really there to visit with Elijah though!:)) I really enjoyed myself with our families. It is so wonderful to be all together and I think this was my favorite birthday yet since it was my first birthday as a mommy. God sure has blessed us not only with the start of our own family, but with the families we were raised in. What a blessing that we can all get together and celebrate life. I’m so glad our families get along and actually like each other. What a wonderful night and I wouldn’t have had it any other way. (Elijah, loved the company, but was kind of sleepy. He did have a big day after all.)
It’s no longer my birthday of course and it’s time to go to bed. We got Elijah to sleep not too long ago and I’m hoping since he had such a big day and was awake for so much that he’ll sleep really well and long tonight. Goodnight!

Friday, September 21, 2007

Elijah is an amazing little boy and I can’t believe what happened tonight…
Uncle Dan and Aunt Darlene are here. They’ve sold their house and are moving to Madison, WI. They are staying with us for a few days while in transition. While I’m happy for them, we’re sad to see them go. Auntie Darlene has been here the last few days (while finalizing things with their house) and it’s been nice to have the company and help. I sure am going to miss them! (I know it’s not too far, but it was nice having them only 20 minutes away).
We were all hanging out with Elijah tonight and he did something amazing! I still can’t believe it. (I’ll be posting a video on Photobucket so that you will know that I’m telling the truth) Not only is Elijah doing well, he is exceeding the expectations of what a child his age should be doing. Have I made you wait long enough to find out what he did?
He rolled over! He’s not even six weeks old and he rolled over from his stomach to his back. He’s not supposed to be able to do that for a few more months. Then again there are a lot of things that he’s not supposed to be able to do. Elijah is showing those doctors wrong! I feel like God is trying to encourage us by having him develop so quickly. It’s hard to worry when he’s exceeding expectations. He is amazing and I can’t believe he is mine. Something sinister tried to steal him from us, but didn’t succeed. I can’t wait for the day when we don’t have to worry about evil anymore. The day will come.
I am so happy! I want to dance around in circles and sing songs. Praise God!

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Elijah is hatless! (Or beanie-less if you prefer J). I have been slowly dressing Elijah in fewer clothes. Today and yesterday I had him without a hat on. I’ve been keeping a close eye on his temp and he has been doing great. His temp has been consistently higher than it has been in the past. Since he was doing well without a hat, today I didn’t put socks on him to see how he handled that. He has been doing fantastic. He seems to be getting consistently closer to that coveted 98.6 degree temp. Yet another answered prayer!
He is just so cute. I just got him to sleep a few minutes ago and now he woke up. He’s stretching and fortunately looks really happy right now. I’m sure it’ll only be a matter of minutes and he’ll want to eat again. His eyes are bright and looking around.
Sure enough, he’s angry now, so I’ll have to cut this short. Goodnight!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

I don’t like the words damaged or can’t.
My son is technically brain damaged and according to the neurologist (whom I affectionately refer to as Dr. Gloom) his damage is severe. (Although, I wonder what he would say now if he were to see Elijah) This implies that there is something wrong with him, but to me my son is perfect. I don’t want Elijah to ever think that he is damaged goods. Yes, he had a rough start, but he is by no means damaged. If you break a leg, we don’t call you leg damaged. You simply broke your leg and when that heals, you can almost forget about it. That’s how I look at what happened to Elijah. He had an injury and needed (needs) to heal.
I understand how serious Elijah’s injury was, but I have no reason to think that he won’t be able to do just about anything. Can’t will not be in his vocabulary. I know he doesn’t understand me just yet, but I already tell him this. I tell him he can do anything and that there is absolutely nothing wrong with him. Perhaps it will soak into that little brain of his. So much already has. When he was in the hospital, I used to tell him every night what he needed to work on. It would be anything from getting his gag reflex, to crying, to rerouting his brain. Often I would come the next day and he would have done the thing that I had told him to work on. Now, of course I don’t think I’m the one who got Elijah to do the things I told him to do (we know who did that!), but I certainly don’t think it has hurt to talk to him about these things even when he doesn’t quite understand yet. One day he will understand and I can’t wait to tell him the story of his miraculous birth. I can’t wait to tell him how many people loved him before they even met him and how they prayed for him and God listened. I can’t help but think that God has a plan for the little guy. He has a plan for all of us.
Elijah and I spent a lot of time staring at each other today. We’re still trying to figure each other out. He’s not so sure about me. J One thing he is doing is holding onto my shirt now when I carry him around. I love that. He also likes to hold his head up when he’s being carried around and wants to see what’s going on. I thought it was so cute the first time he held onto my hair, but now he pulls it. He’s pulled out several of my hairs. I don’t care…well, not that much. J It’s been another great day and it keeps getting better.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

It has become my routine to take a bath every night while Andy and Elijah spend some time together. I’ve never been a ”bath person,” but it sure is nice to unwind and spend some time alone. I’m so glad to have a husband who is so supportive…and who’s willing to change diapers! :)
I was awoken last night by thunder and rain. It took me back to the night I went into labor (it was storming that night and the power even went out for a moment). It rained almost constantly for the first week of Elijah’s life and today it was raining again. But today the rain didn’t seem gloomy or sad and the sound of the rain on our roof last night made me smile. It has always been one of my favorite sounds. Everything seems so much happier now that I have my boy home with me.
I think I’m going to skip my bath tonight. I’m really tired and I think it would be best if I would just go to sleep. I think I’m still trying to get caught up from all my sleep deprivation. Have a great night everyone!

Monday, September 17, 2007

Elijah is a good boy! He now weighs 11 lbs. 3 oz! The public health nurse came by this morning for the second time to see how Elijah is doing and to weigh him. He is definitely eating well. I guess I should’ve known since eating is his favorite pastime. The nurse is a really nice lady and she told me that both Elijah and I are looking good. We like to hear that. J She also said that the boy on the report she read and the boy she sees in Elijah are two completely different children. I can tell that she is surprised at how well Elijah is doing and that she thought Elijah is an adorable and fun little boy. I am constantly amazed at this little man. He’s wonderful!
Today was the first day that the two of us were truly alone the whole day (well, except for the visit from the nurse in the morning). We had a good day together and spent a lot of time snuggling. It’s so nice to be able to be together. I didn’t get much done since I held him so much. It’s a good problem to have and I feel really happy.
I have to go now since there is a little man screaming by his daddy. He’s hungry again! Isn’t it great to be a mommy? J

Sunday, September 16, 2007

It’s been another great day with our little boy. He is doing so well and it seems that he has learned how to use his voice even more in the last few days. Maybe he’s starting to figure out that we’re at his beckon call. We’d do anything for him and he knows it. And to think when we first got him home we had to wake him up in order to make sure he was getting enough to eat!
So far Elijah’s favorite pastime is eating and I’m pretty sure he’d be content to eat all of his time that he’s awake. He sure is a squirmy fellow. I was trying to write this while holding him and that was nearly impossible. It’s time to go to bed and the little stinker is lying next to me wide awake. At least he’s not asking to eat…don’t worry, it won’t be long. I’d better make this short since I’d like to go to bed in the next century.
Thanks to everyone who responded to my last journal about anger. I feel a lot better today and it really helped me to get that off of my chest. It’s nice to know that others understand what I’m feeling and don’t judge me for it. Now I can go back to being my optimistic, happy-go-lucky self and look forward instead of backward. I love how healing writing can be. It is such a release.
Elijah and I both have the hiccups right now and I think it’s pretty funny. Well, we should really try to go to sleep the three of us. Goodnight and thanks again.
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